The Poconos are a very popular spot to be this weekend.
Not only are crowds going there to spend the Fourth of July.
It’s also the first Indycar race at Pocono Raceway.
As the campers and RV’s pull into Pocono Raceway and crowds of Indycar fans are starting to form, some local businesses that usually profit from NASCAR are wondering, “How is this new batch of race fans going to improve their sales?”
“We really hope it’s going to bring in a lot of new people. That aren’t around for NASCAR. Indy is altogether different. But with a 20 year hiatus, we don’t really know what’s going to happen, who’s coming, how many,” said Cathy Kresge, the manager of Harmony Beverage.
Harmony Beverage, a few miles from Pocono Raceway, is always slammed during NASCAR races.
But what’s “tricky” about this race is it also falls on a very popular weekend in general for the Poconos.
The Fourth of July holiday weekend.
So the lines of people at Harmony Beverage are in town to celebrate the Fourth.
“Today that might change, because yesterday was the Fourth of July and today the Indy people might start coming and Saturday even more so. So that might be when we find out who’s who and what’s what,” said Kresge.
While some local businesses aren’t sure just how this Indycar crowd will benefit them, one local pizzeria, just down the street, says it’s already seeing a financial boost because of this race.
“We’ve done pretty good with the Indycar. Not so much from the fans but from inside the track we’ve done extremely well with people being in the area. And all the different crews and stuff,” said Alan Knee, the co-owner of Ray’s Tuscan Villa.
Ray’s Tuscan Villa is about two miles from the Pocono Raceway.
Knee says the orders he’s been filling from the crews have been exceptional.
“When they came up last Monday, we got their order for 38 or 40 lasagna’s, two eggplant rollatini’s for dinner. And the following day we had lunch set up for Penske racing and the other seven crews came in throughout the day. Everyone ordered for 40 people. So we covered them all,” said Knee.
Knee is expecting the demand for food will only grow as the weekend goes on.
The Pocono Indycar 400 is Sunday at 12:15.