Hog Record has Little Impact on Hotel Stays
Though some football fans cancelled their reservations at hotels this upcoming weekend, some loyal Razorback fans have buoyed the potential loss in revenue by buying up the extra rooms, officials said.
The Marriott Townplace Suites in Bentonville and Springdale both reported cancellations since Arkansas’ loss in overtime to the University of Louisiana Monroe.
The latest disappointment for fans came Sept. 15 with a 52-0 rout at the hands of No. 1 Alabama, a game in which Arkansas was shut out in Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium for the first time since 1966.
“At least 10 rooms were cancelled prior to the hotel’s 72-hour cancellation cutoff, though those rooms have since been filled,” said June Kraft, general manager of the Springdale location.
Other hotels require that cancellations be made with more advanced notice.
At the Courtyard by Marriott hotel in Fayetteville, visitors are required to cancel their rooms at least two weeks in advance for football weekends. As a result, the Courtyard by Marriott business has not been critically affected by the Hogs’ losses.
“Even though the team has suffered some setbacks the last week, our occupancy has remained solid,” said Marriott hotel manager Jeff Arthur. “Most of our guests are regulars. We do a lot with the university, we have people from CBS Sports here, so there are a lot of people who will be here regardless. We’ve had very few calls for cancellations.”
Even though hotel reservations have slightly declined, Hog nation is still strong and students are making strides to show support for the football program.
On Wednesday, following the Razorbacks’ practice, hundreds of UA students showed up at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium and called the Hogs as the team approached the tunnel.
“Our ASG president sent out an email saying she felt bad because a lot of the fans left around or at halftime at the game on Saturday,” freshman Abbey Martens said. “So she said we should get together and show the team our support for this Saturday’s game. We’re just trying to show them we still believe in them and that we’re still fans even though they had to look up and see the empty stands.”
Players exchanged high fives with UA students as they walked through the tunnel. The fan support comes as the program has received recent criticism for their poorest start since the 2009 season.
For Arkansas safety Ross Rasner it was a new experience.
“That was really special,” Rasner said. “I’ve been here four years and I’ve never seen anything like that. It’s good to know that all of the students still have our backs, especially just to come out after a simple practice like that and see their support. It’s really good to see that.”