With the Super Bowl coming up this Sunday night, many Cornellians are making plans with friends, ordering food from local restaurants and predicting who will win this year’s game. From trekking to Collegetown for some takeout to hosting dorm parties, many have begun preparing Super Bowl festivities days ahead of the game.
Local restaurants and businesses in Ithaca are also prepping for this weekend, hiring more staff, stocking up on food and even focusing on specific menu items to sell. Restaurants like Wings Over Ithaca, Luna Inspired Street Food and D.P. Dough are preparing for a surge in orders.
Representatives from Wings Over Ithaca said they expect many students to order food for the game. Dan Leyva, CEO of Wings Over, spoke about the gravity of the event for the famed eatery, located on Dryden Street.
“Super Bowl Sunday is the biggest day of the year for us,” Leyva said. “We’re expecting this one to be one of the biggest ones yet.”
Leyva added that the company has taken measures to ensure their restaurants — including their franchise in Ithaca — are able to operate at capacity.
“Starting this past Monday, people can preorder [food] for the game,” Leyva said. “We do have a slightly modified menu where we focus on our best items: wings, tenders, fries.”
Customers who decide to order ahead will automatically enter a raffle to win free tenders for a year, according to the Wings Over website. Connor Nolte, marketing director at Wings Over, mentioned that the popular grill may also award prizes via social media to those who pre-order.
“We do have a few surprises up our sleeves,” Nolte said.
To better facilitate orders, Wings Over Ithaca has integrated new technology into their takeout service, including text messages updating guests on the status of their order.
In terms of staffing, both Luna and Wings Over Ithaca were expecting to have more employees on hand.
“For Sunday, it’s an all hands-on deck situation,” Levya said. “Anyone from marketing to social media [is working]. We try to have extra drivers, extra hands for the big day.”
With many businesses bracing for the large amount of demand, students expressed high excitement for Sunday’s festivities. Many students, like Alex Burnett ’25, did not express a personal stake in the match between the Los Angeles Rams and Cincinnati Bengals, but they look forward to spending time with friends.
“I don’t usually put a lot of thought into the Super Bowl,” Burnett said. “For a lot of people [I realize] it’s a really important social event.”
Burnett, who will spend the day at Chesterton House, spoke to his motivations for attending.
“The whole point of it is to make connections with the people you care about,” Burnett said. “It seems you can get that from sharing a meal with a community.”
Students without a strong rooting interest, like Luke Martini ’25, plan to pick a team to back in the competition.
“We’ll go Bengals,” Martini said. “I think they’re the underdogs.”
Martini expressed his plans to watch the game with his suitemates and to order Domino’s pizza in advance of the big day.
To Cornellians planning to watch the game or simply hang out with friends this Sunday, Martini offered some advice.
“Have fun and don’t think about school on Monday,” he said. “It should be a holiday in my opinion.”