SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — World Cup fever is sweeping across the country and has certainly hit Central New York.
Local businesses like Wolff’s Biergarten, and the Salt City Market have been hosting viewing parties where fans can watch together.
Joe Jones, owner and general manager of Wolff’s Biergarten, said that supporting soccer fans through their World Cup journey has been quite the experience.
“It has been insane,” he said, “I mean, starting with USA’s very first came on a Monday. I was in at seven in the morning meeting with the Fire Chiefs so we could talk about regulations and moving all of the tables out and making sure that we had proper headcount.”
“But it’s been electrifying,” Jones added, With the crowd in here and seeing the USA win that last game, I mean, it was wild. Out of nowhere when they hit that ball, all of a sudden you just hear Pops. And I looked up and I just see confetti flying everywhere.”
Steve Heller, the Syracuse chapter president of the US fan club The American Outlaws, said because of the overwhelming support they have had to use overflow locations where fans can go enjoy the games.
“Because of the Winter World Cup, we’ve added the overflow at the Landmark and then now here at Salt City Market,” Heller said, “So it’s been a great showing.”
He says being able to watch these games with fellow fans is what sports are all about.
“It’s a whole different feeling,” he said, “Watching sport with a group of other people, even if you’re not in the stadium, is still, like, the energy is just palpable.”
“It’s just drawn in all of the community,” Jones added, “People that don’t even necessarily watch soccer are like, we want to come and be a part of this experience.”
Wolff’s Biergarten will be open Saturday morning beginning at 7 a.m. for the United States v. The Netherlands. Fans can also watch the matchup at the Salt City Market.