Kirkland sports pub says NFL protests affecting business’ bottom line
KIRKLAND, Wash. — Dub Pub is a sports bar in Kirkland which caters to the college crowd. In the past, they’ve always had large, standing room only crowds on Seahawks game days, but that wasn’t the case on Sunday.
Protests during the national anthem continued into week four of the NFL's regular season. At least a half a dozen customers stood inside the Dub Pub sports bar in Kirkland watching, and to some extent, still supporting the nine players sitting on the Seahawks sideline Sunday.
Dub Pub owners don't mind what stance customer's take on the protests. It's what you don't see that has them worried--more people.
"We've had customers that have decided not to come in," said co-owner Lee Dumas. "It's unfortunate because a lot of us make our livelihood off of these sports."
Dumas says his patrons are particular, especially when it comes to the protests, but the recent lack of business is starting to affect his bottom line.
"They don`t come in. They don`t support the NFL."
Even the regulars have noticed.
"It's completely full, typically. Hard to get in actually. Hard to sit down," described long time customer Mike Riley. "It would be a full hour and a half before the game."
Not Sunday. An hour and a half before the game you could count the patrons on two hands.
"I`ve been to Husky games and Cougar games here, among UFC fight and the place, is always super crowded," Riley said.
Instead, rows of empty seats and deserted tables filled in a little once the game started.
"Compared to what we've had in the past it's a ghost town," said Dumas.
"I think it`s hurt us a little bit," said Brittany Ingamells.
Ingamells the lead evening bartender at Dub Pub, says it's it's unusual for a place that's used to setting up plastic tables and chairs for overflow crowds.
"I feel like it`s more packed on the Husky games than it is on the Seahawks games."
The bar pays for Direct TV gameday packages for over 50 TV screens inside the establishment.
Based on full occupancy that costs them several thousand dollars. Bar owners said they still pay for full-occupancy pricing even when the restaurant is far from full.