World Cup frenzy in Seattle

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by CHRIS DANIELS / KING 5 News

NWCN.com

Posted on June 22, 2014 at 6:13 PM

Updated Monday, Jun 23 at 6:55 AM

SEATTLE - This city is a long way from Brazil, and heck, it's a long way from home for Jeff Guzman.

"You gotta get in the freakin' spirit," says the Redmond resident, who drove across the lake to watch the US men compete in the World Cup.

The Fuel Sports Bar set up a jumbotron in a parking lot adjacent to the Pioneer Square spot, in an attempt to attract guys like Jeff.  "I've got a 100 inch HD screen at home, super high crisp, but you can't get this energy at home."

Owner Mike Morris planned for this party for six months.  "This is the biggest one.  American pride, and soccer in Seattle, has blown up, it really has."  Morris says business was up "500 percent" over the same day last year.

John Bayliss, at the Market Arms Pub in Ballard, cited similar numbers. "It's great business, you look at the schedule, figure out who's playing and staff accordingly."  Bayliss says the World Cup business is "5-6 times the regular" of a mid-June day.

There are now dozens of restaurants and bars, across the region, offering World Cup viewing parties, and specials, as a way to attract soccer fans.  Bayliss, and Morris, both say it appears interest has steadily increased in the month-long tournament.

Guzman says he's already made plans for the next US match on Thursday morning, but for that one, "I'm going to bring a change of clothing."

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