KANSAS CITY, Kan. — The Kansas City Chiefs return to the Super Bowl has local sports fans excited for another chance at the Lombardi Trophy.
Meanwhile, bars and restaurants in Kansas are excited to give patrons another chance to enjoy the game while betting on the big game.
“Since that passed, we’ve had people come right up to our bar, and I’m sure other bars in Kansas, just for the sake of having a couple drinks while making sports bets,” said Sam Houze, co-owner of Fat Matt’s Vortex. .
It’s why he’s thrilled that Kansas lawmakers allowed people in the state to place their bets right at the start of the NFL season.
It’s sad that it draws punters to Fat Matt’s Vortex when they open at 10am to place their bets before starting the day. When those customers stick around, it means extra business at the cafe.
“It makes it more interesting to know which customers might have money on different games,” Houze said.
A few miles away, Tin Roof’s general manager, Josh Boor, is eyeing that extra deal from a distance. He’s Bar is less than a mile from the state line, making it relatively easier for customers to place their bets elsewhere.
“With Kansas on the move [sports betting] out not too long ago, it seems like a lot of business went across the state line,” Boor said.
That’s why he’s waiting for Missouri lawmakers to follow Kansas’ lead and legalize sports betting. There are some proposals on how to do this, but past efforts have stalled on how to allow certain types of games and specifics on how much the state would get out of them.
Until then, Boor can only wait for lawmakers to give customers one more reason to stay in Missouri a little longer.
“For people to have a little bit more interest or rooting factor in one more game, stay a little longer, order another appetizer, order another drink, we think that’s something that’s definitely going to create business,” he said Boor.
The Kansas Restaurant and Hospitality Association said there isn’t enough data to know for sure what impact sports betting has had on the industry. Some companies say they might see a little bump, others aren’t so sure.
The association adds that inflation makes it difficult to figure out how much more business they might be doing because most items have gotten more expensive.