ERIN, WI - The pomp and circumstance surrounding this year’s U.S. Open in the town of Erin, Wisconsin promised to bring big business to local establishments, or at least that’s what small business owners in the area thought.
“It hasn’t bee crazy over the top,” Robert Bilda said.
Bilda owns Bilda’s Friess Lake Pub in the Village of Richfield, right outside of Erin. Bilda said he expected business to boom as a result of thousands of people traveling and lodging in the area for the U.S. Open, but unfortunately, that was not the case.
“The expectations [that] it was going to be making thousands of dollars just didn’t materialize,” Bilda said. “We still did better than we normally do."
Further down the road at the Fox and Hounds Restaurant and Tavern, the sentiment is the same.
“It’s been a little bit soft for us,” Sally Koch said. “We've seen a different kind of clientele come through our doors in the last five days."
As general manager of the Fox and Hounds, Koch said her expectations for sales and the number of people served throughout the week of the tournament were high. However, now that things are winding down, she’s prepared to get back to her regular routine.
“It will be kind of nice to get things backs to normal,” Koch said. “We just hope maybe in another 10 or 12 years we can host it again."