NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The SEC Men’s Basketball Tournament is set to kick off on Wednesday at Bridgestone Arena.
The expected crowds come amid concerns about coronavirus.
University of Florida fans Lee and Barry Harmer are excited to watch their Gators fight for the SEC title.
“There’s no better reason to come to Nashville than to see the Gators play in the SEC tournament,” said the Harmers.
But the couple brought more than just their Gator gear.
“I brought Clorox wipes, hand sanitizer, and I wash my hands constantly,” said the Harmers.
Concerns about the global spread of coronavirus have canceled countless conventions and concerts in Music City.
But so far, the SEC Tournament is still a go.
“Hopefully they play,” said the Harmers. “I understand if they don’t. I’ll be disappointed. We’ve traveled a long way.”
The SEC announced it would be taking precautions including using hospital-grade disinfectant to sanitize locker rooms, game balls, team benches, and cheerleader seating areas.
Meanwhile, Bridgestone Arena announced it’s doing weekly deep cleanings of common surfaces like handrails, buttons, and elevators.
And when the games wrap up, crowds are likely going to head down to Broadway to enjoy the rest of their night.
“I know that we’re taking, along with other bars, taking extra precautions with wiping down everything,” said Dominique Gazzeny who works at Rippy’s.
Nicole Virga said the bar is even using a more powerful cleaning solution.
“We received this last week because of the coronavirus. It’s an extra strength disinfectant,” said Virga. “We spray all our surfaces in the evening, chairs, bar tops, railings, anything people are touching excessively. We also spray in the morning as well.”
They’re all amped up precautions that businesses hope will help to ease customers’ fears.
“We’re super sanitary, so come see us,” said Gazzeny.