CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Bojangles' Coliseum has hosted Elvis Presley and Billy Graham. Soon it will be home to Dr. Oz playing basketball.
Spectrum Center is not the only Charlotte arena getting love NBA All-Star weekend. The celebrity game will be played at the Bojangles' Coliseum on Friday. On Saturday the historic arena will host media day and practice.
The events are good news for nearby east Charlotte businesses hoping to cash in on the more than 150,000 estimated visitors.
Justin Crouse, manager of Lupie's Cafe, says the restaurant is always busy during Coliseum events like Checkers games. His staff is anticipating a lot of work this weekend.
"We love to have newcomers and visitors," Crouse said. "It's exciting. We are going to get our excercise doing laps around this place."
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City leaders are expecting at least a $100 million economic impact from the NBA All-Star Game. With major events at Bojangles' Coliseum on Friday and Saturday, restaurants like the Bean, which is across the street, are getting ready.
"We always are looking forward to big events over there," owner Roy Parkhurst said.
Roy Parkhurst and Charlie Foesch own the vegan southern comfort food restaurant. They say they are no stranger to celebrities.
"We had a lot of celebrities come in during the Democratic National Convention," Parkhurst said. "It is always fun to meet celebrities when they are in town."
A short walk away from the coliseum is Smokey Joe's. Tuesday night was open mic night at the popular bar. On Friday entertainers from Dr. Oz to Quavo will be hitting the court for the celebrity all-star game.
"I have no clue who they are," a Smokey Joe's regular named Bobby told Channel 9. "All I know is businesses are going to flourish because of this all-star game."
The good news continues for east Charlotte businesses. A couple weeks after the NBA-Allstar Weekend is the CIAA Tournament where many games are also being played at the Bojangles' Coliseum.
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