JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Thousands of Georgia and Florida fans are making their way to Jacksonville for the big game Saturday at EverBank Field. They are having a big impact on the local economy pumping thousands of dollars into local restaurants, hotels and stores.
Sam Todd was one of dozens of customers at Total Wine & More in St. Johns Town Center Wednesday stocking up for the Georgia-Florida weekend. He planned on spending about $500 on alcohol.
"I'm buying a massive amount of stuff for all the people that are going to be tailgating next to the Jags stadium...tons of vodka, bourbon, gin, rum. You have to cross all aisles to make sure you have enough for everybody," said Todd.
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Total Wine Supervisor Alma Lawrence said since the doors opened Wednesday morning football fans have been flowing in, and traffic is only expected to pick up leading up to the game.
"We generally do about six figures more this weekend," said Alma.
Even smaller stores like Riverside Liquors see a big boost in business this time of year.
Logan Raspa said, "Florida-Georgia every year has brought in at least over a thousand, three thousand dollars for us."
It's one of the biggest weekends for sales of the year for many liquor stores in the Jacksonville area.
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"Everybody is going to be in here for their beer, kegs, distilled spirits and a lot of rivalry going on here...so it's a great time," said Lawrence.
But Police warn to be careful during the weekend, last year JSO arrested 33 people. Police also ejected more than 70 fans from the stadium during the game.
First Coast News