‘A huge drinking night’: South Side businesses prepare for busy Thanksgiving eve

PITTSBURGH — Businesses on the South Side are prepared for a big Thanksgiving eve.

“We expect to get super busy. It’s a huge drinking night,” Urban Tap Manager Kayla Pecina said. “It’s pretty huge. This pre-holiday can be kind of difficult with people trying to save money for Christmas, so we really depend on this night to get us through the holiday slow season.”

At the other end of East Carson Street, Bonfire Food & Drink readied for a busy night.

“The night before Thanksgiving, everyone’s out. No one is cooking tonight. Everyone wants someone to do everything for them,” bar manager Amanda Wilkerson-Kelley said.

She calls the night important, but not a make-or-break season for the business.

“Tonight’s a notoriously busy night. So, it’s kind of nice kicking off the holiday, but it’s not a make-or-break,” Wilkerson-Kelley said.

The issue of safety on the South Side has been one we’ve widely covered.

“Sometimes, a little riffraff here. Every once in a while, with the barriers, a little bit of walking patterns and driving patterns might be skewed. Overall, things are changing,” bar patron Scott Mervick said. He’s not worried.

Pecina is just waiting to see how things go.

“It definitely is a concern. I have no idea. Hopefully, it doesn’t impact us too much. I’m sure there will be a big police presence out tonight,” Pecina said.

We reached out to Pittsburgh police, who said patrols remain normal.

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