Sunday marks the pinnacle game in football: the Super Bowl.
As restaurants prepare for the busy night, fans will have cheer from the comfort of their own home as health officials are asking everyone to stay at home to watch the game with their family and not gather in groups.
Takeout at Moose Cookhouse restaurant in North Bay is expected to be busy on Super Bowl Sunday.
“Usually we have people starting to have people book tables in October and November for it,” said restaurant operating partner Brody Freeland. “This year obviously not, but we got quite a few pre-orders. They started rolling in this week."
Restaurants continue to tackle the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic head on. Freeland says Super Bowl Sunday is always the busiest day for the restaurant. He adds it’s a chance for local sports bars and restaurants to kick 2021 off on the right foot.
“Every little bit helps,” he said. “At the end of the day, just this restaurant alone employs 30-40 people in the town."
Health officials at the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit and Ontario Provincial Police officers are pleading with the public to follow stay-at-home order rules and only watch the game with those you live with.
“Stay within your safety bubble and use various virtual options to stay in touch with all of your friends," said OPP Sgt. Carlo Berardi.
The health unit and OPP recommend football fans set up a virtual teleconference with friends so you can watch the game together and encourage people to coordinate a Super Bowl dinner so everyone can enjoy the same food virtually. The health unit is also encouraging families set up game day challenges to stay active and competitive.
“We know that people will want to celebrate this day with their friends and family, but we need to remember to do so safely,” said Medical Officer of Health Dr. Jim Chirico. “With new COVID-19 variant cases surging across the province, following the Stay-at-Home Order is more important than ever. This doesn’t mean we can’t have fun, we simply need to be more creative.”
The health unit is reminding residents that the provincial stay-at-home order means that you cannot gather indoors with people you do not live with, or if you live alone with people outside your one exclusive close contact family.
Traveling outside your home should be limited except for going to work or school, and for essential trips such groceries, medication, and medical appointments.