Residents making adjustments for Notre Dame football season

Published: Sep. 11, 2020 at 6:23 PM EDT
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - Notre Dame stadium generates a lot of excitement and business for the City of South Bend on gameday weekends, but not this year.

Residents who rent out their homes for the weekend can make a couple thousand dollars in just a few days when Irish fans descend upon South Bend.

However, this year, less fans will be coming to town, as well as their dollars.

We likely won’t see a full crowd at all this season.

That means Lisa Hinkle’s who lives a couple of minutes from campus, won’t be renting her home to groups coming in for the game.

“I had to refund deposits so that was a loss of income. I’ve been doing this for six years and it’s something I depend on every year,” said Hinkle.

She says she’ll miss out on thousands of dollars every home weekend from people canceling their rentals, but she also says it will be sad not seeing the renters she’s gotten to know over the past half-decade.

“I’ve developed a lot of relationships with people that have stayed. I have four or five families that come every year and I depend on that too because it’s repeat business every year,” Hinkle said.

While COVID precautions and capacity limits made the decision to stay home easier for those traveling from far away, one nearby resident who has tickets had a tough choice to make.

“I really miss not being able to go because it’s historic, and I would love to be able to say that I did it, and usually I’m one of those people on the edge. I don’t mind taking chances so I really have to convince myself this isn’t that kind of chance that you take. That I should really wait and see how it goes and perhaps go to a game later if I hear things work out well,” said South Bend resident Anne Pillai.

Pillai says she’ll be treating this weekend as if the Irish were on the road.

“I’m either going to watch it here in my traditional away game spot or I may very well watch it with my daughter in a very well ventilated room sitting far away with a mask on,” Pillai said.

Whether it’s losing business or the experience we’re normally used to when college football kicks off, many South Bend residents have a reason to feel something’s missing from this opening weekend of Irish football.

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