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Businesses welcome Super Bowl fans

by: JIM CLARK Buffalo Wild Wings Bar and Grill in Wood Village is hosting a Super Bowl party with a $10 cover charge. The restaurant boasts 13 huge TVs and some prize drawings.

San Francisco 49ers fans may still be sulking that their boys won't be playing on the field in Indianapolis on Super Bowl Sunday, but it's doubtful they will boycott kickoff come Sunday, Feb. 5.

Football fans widely consider Super Bowl Sunday to be the closest thing to an official national sports holiday there is. They gather with other diehards, sporting appropriate team attire and party like it's 1999.

But whether you actually watch the competition or tune in for the legendary commercials, the game itself is frequently the most watched broadcast of the year, attracting an estimated 111 million viewers annually. Super Bowl Sunday is also the second largest day for food consumption, next to Thanksgiving Day.

Good news for local pubs and eateries, which plan an afternoon of food and drink specials, door prize drawings and friendly rivalries.

There isn't a bad seat in the house at Buffalo Wild Wings Bar and Grill in Wood Village. Thirteen enormous big screens cover the walls in the dining and bar areas, probably making viewers better at calling penalties than the officials on the field.

'No matter where you sit, you'll be able to see the game,' said Sara Christman, general manager for the bar and grill. 'We make (Super Bowl Sunday) a party.'

There is a $10 cover charge for the big game, which gives everyone entry into several door prize drawings, including a 42-inch flat screen TV. Reservations are accepted for those looking to guarantee a prime seat. Employees will be decked out in black and white field official striped shirts, which could come in handy at halftime.

'That's our Blazing Challenge,' Christman said. 'We will have a Giants fan and a Patriots fan go at it for bragging rights over who can eat 12 of our hottest wings on the menu in 12 minutes or less. The winner will get six free wings at their next visit and a sweat headband. Although, we probably should give that to them before the challenge!'

At The Hangout in Gresham, owner Sam Collins admits it was a sad season for his Indianapolis Colts, who made it to the big stage in 2010, but only managed to secure the No. 1 pick in the draft this season. Still, Super Bowl Sunday promises to attract Giants and Patriots fans and those just caught up in football frenzy.

'Super Bowl is one of our bigger events,' Collins said. 'Teams really don't matter much on game day, it's just a party. But if you want a seat, you need to get here very early.'

The Hangout is offering food and drink specials for the game, as well as raffle drawings for team jerseys for the Giants and Patriots and Portland Trail Blazers tickets.

If watching the game without heckling from the opposing team's fans suits you, gather a group and head to 4th Street Brewery in Gresham.

'We have a private room people can rent out for their group,' said owner Adam Roberts. 'It's usually a last-minute thing, since people wait to see if their team is playing before they rent it, but it has a 100-inch TV so it's great viewing.'

Super Bowl XLVI could be a grudge match between the New York Giants and New England Patriots, who also battled it out in the 2008 Super Bowl. The Giants were the victors of that game, besting the Patriots 17-14 in a colossal upset. But despite no West Coast representation in the big game, there are plenty of places to celebrate professional football's biggest day.