SHELBY, N.C. — The American Legion World Series is back on this year in Shelby.
What You Need To Know
American Legion World Series was cancelled last year because of COVID-19
Pfeiffer Cafe and Confections say its sales increase 30-50% during the ALWS
After the cafe was hit hard financially during the pandemic it's counting on the ALWS
Last year it was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, and many local businesses were hurting when they lost out on the tourist business.
The owners of a locally owned cafe and ice cream shop say they look forward to the American Legion World Series every year as their sales increase by almost 50%.
Steve Knapp and his wife own the Pfeiffer Cafe and Confections in Shelby. It’s a cafe, gift shop, ice cream parlor and a bakery all in one and a one-stop shop for players and families in town for the ALWS.
“I would say we probably grow 30 to 50% in sales overall,” Steve Knapp said.
Knapp says the World Series is an event they count on every summer as it boost sales. Last year's cancellation hit their business hard.
“The pandemic shut the gift shop down and for a period of time shut the cafe down,” Knapp said.
Now that the ALWS is back, they’re excited to have business back to normal.
“We get a lot of business from the teams themselves, their family members," Knapp said. "On a normal day we probably have about 100 tables, and then during the World Series we probably do about 150, if the outside is open we do much more.”
Their outdoor seating is closed due to lack of staff.
They had to cut the number of their employees in half because of lost revenue during the pandemic, and now they’re adding more staff back to be at full capacity during the busy months.
“As soon as we open the kitchen, printers will take off and the place will fill up almost immediately," Knapp said. "Even today in our first moments of opening I’ve seen faces that I know are here that aren’t normally here, so this is traffic from the series. I’m certain of it, increased our sales by 30-50%.”
With the players stopping by for ice cream and chocolate-dipped treats after their games, the Knapps are baking and cooking all day.
They wouldn’t have it any other way.
The American Legion World Series will not be doing its seventh-inning stretch concert this year, which the Knapps say brings in double the people because they usually have well-known singers.
Knapp says he’s hopeful next year will be back to normal as well.