The sound was deafening, and thunderous screams could be heard from the parking lot. Some even had tears that streamed down their cheeks. The emotional outbursts from everyone shouting in unison seemed to rattle the floor and shake the windows. Everyone, win or lose, left anticipating their next visit. This is a typical game-day at Buffalo Wild Wings in East Naples.
“Wings, Beer and Sports” is their motto, but fun is what it’s all about. You can watch your favorite team with 46 TVs from which to choose while deciding which one of the 21 sauces and seasonings should go on your wing order. You can pair one of 30 draft beer options with a devastatingly delicious and juicy Jack Daddy Burger topped with savory pork, cheddar jack cheese, onion rings and honey BBQ sauce. Or have one of their signature cocktails served with a sirloin steak quesadilla topped with a creamy white cheese sauce. Of course, there are a wide variety of other menu options available. And happy hour is all day, every day at your local Buffalo Wild Wings with $2.75 domestic drafts, $2.50 well drinks and $4.00 house wines.
Bdubs, as it’s often referred as, was founded in 1982 by Jim Disbrow and Scott Lowery at a location near Ohio State University. The concept was created after the pair couldn’t find a place in their area for Buffalo-style chicken wings. After opening their first store, the concept expanded to a chain of six over the next decade with sites in Ohio, Indiana and Colorado. Today there are 1,264 locations in ten countries.
The Naples BWW franchise was opened in March of 2013 on the grounds of the Court Yard Plaza at 3290 Tamiami Trail in East Naples. The owners, Jim and Nancy Bruno began their association with Buffalo Wild Wings in 2002 in Springfield, Missouri. But they call Southwest Florida home. Mitch Watson, the general manager, has been with the store for more than a year. While his primary focus is ensuring the ultimate customer experience, he also feels it is important to move outside the four walls of the restaurant by getting involved in the community.
Recently, Mitch and his team participated in the Make-A-Wish Southern Florida Mac and Cheese Challenge to help raise funds for local children with critical illnesses. It does not end there however. The store also took third place in the Bay Front Beer Festival in Naples with funds from the event going to local charities. “Our goal is certainly to be the first place people think of when they want to watch a game, have excellent food and a cold beer,” Mitch stated. “But, as a long-time Naples resident, it’s important to me to give back both personally and professionally to our community.”
As Naples transitions from the hectic atmosphere of high tourist season into slower paced hot summer days, Buffalo Wild Wings is expanding their altruistic efforts with their Eat Wings, Raise Funds initiative. Working with organizations such as the East Naples Merchant Association and others, BWW will host a hand-full of events this summer at their location with thirty percent of the net proceeds going to local charities.
The first opportunity for the public to help make an impact on those in need, will be in June. Bdubs anticipates working local businesses and other like-minded organizations to bolster their efforts to raise funds for Make-A-Wish Southern Florida. As plans come together for this next Eat Wings, Raise Funds event, Naples residents are encouraged to visit the store and the BWW Facebook page to stay informed on how everyone in the community can help make a difference.
In the end, what can be more satisfying than helping out those in need while also enjoying your favorite beverage, delicious food and favorite sports team?
BWW is located in the Courthouse Shadows Shopping Center at 3290 Tamiami Trail E, Naples. Visit buffalowildwings.com or call 239-732-9464.