Fans begin to trickle into Tuscaloosa for Iron Bowl
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (WBRC) - The Iron Bowl is just three days away and area hotels are already seeing fans on both sides trickle for the big game inside Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa.
At the Hampton Inn in Tuscaloosa, every single room is booked up this weekend and they’re not alone.
Nothing brings tens of thousands of people to town like the Iron Bowl. Toby Wilson is the president of Wilson Hospitality, the managing team in charge of running the Hampton Inn. Wilson says Iron Bowl weekend is among the top five of his busiest weekends throughout the year when the game is played in Tuscaloosa.
“Yeah, we’re starting to have people come in here and they’re going to spend their Thanksgiving here in Tuscaloosa, extend their stay and go to the game Saturday,” said Wilson.
The Hirselj family was visiting Bryant-Denny Wednesday morning. Daughter Morgan Hirselj will attend her first Iron Bowl this weekend along with her parents and brother, who, by the way, just graduated from the University of Michigan who is ranked number three in the latest College Football Playoff rankings.
“This one I am here,” said Morgan Hirselji. “I chose not go home for Thanksgiving and my parents came down and visited me. So lucky in that one.”
“This year I can root for Alabama knowing it won’t implicate Michigan in any way so, it’s really a best-case scenario for me,” said Drew Hirselj.
And Chris Coleman hopes a best-case scenario for himself as he prepares his business for another Iron Bowl.
“Yeah, the Iron Bowl is the Iron Bowl and it’s going to be a good weekend, but I am curious. We all know that. I’m curious as to how many students will be back because they had the entire week off for Thanksgiving. 70 percent are from out of state, most of them are gone right now,” said Coleman, owner of Unique Bar on University Boulevard on the Strip in Tuscaloosa.
Toby Wilson says Tuscaloosa has around 50 hotels and he’s quite confident, based on history, you’ll be hard pressed to find any rooms Friday and Saturday nights.
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