Downtown Fresno businesses expecting boost as Grizzlies baseball returns

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Downtown Fresno business owners are gearing up for what's expected to be a busy Opening Day when the Grizzlies kick off their season at Chukchansi Park.

Being free of COVID restrictions for the first time should translate into dollar signs for both the team and area.

"It just means there's going to be more life," says Downtown Fresno Partnership Programming Director Jazzmine Young.

Life for a part of town that often times struggles during after business hours.

"Not only is it just the Grizzlies are bringing people here, we also have the Brewery District, we have new restaurants and new entertainment that's also bringing people to the Grizzlies," Young says.

One of the new spots to grab a bite is Dab Tacos. Located in the Brewery District, it's Mexican food served with a twist.

This weekend, baseball fans can pick up an order of Dab Dogs in honor of Opening Day.

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"What I hope is that more people come down and try the food, not just the Dab Dogs. Everything from our elotes to mulitas," says Michael Gonzales.

Opening Day in 2021 was challenged by COVID restrictions but those have since been lifted to allow for more people in the stadium and at local establishments.

"That's what's really cool about the Brewery District and not just us, but Full Circle across the street. About 6 pm, you got families coming down here. People bring their kids and enjoy their drinks outside, it's a good family environment. Then after the game, we're expecting the nightlife to come out and have fun," Gonzales said.

The area should be ready for large crowds again after 21,000 attended last month's FresYes Fest. The giant block party returned to downtown following a two-year hiatus.

"People want to get out, people just want to do something whether it's a FresYes Fest, Grizzlies, even a concert or Hamilton. We have so much activity going on people want to take advantage of it," Young said.
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