“You’ve got to think bigger picture, longer term,” said Smith. “It’s gonna only … help the (tourist) season.”
Chris Grady, one of the owners of Stagecoach Coffee, was similarly positive about the president’s visit.
“Regardless of whatever politics you believe in, I think it’s phenomenal that he’s willing to appreciate our area and promote tourism,” said Grady, who noted that there were quite a few places the president could go to promote tourism. “I’m really happy he’s decided to give accolades to Cooperstown.”
Grady also said that business at Stagecoach Coffee was doing well that day.
“It’s been extremely busy,” said Grady. “The mood seems pretty good.”
Stagecoach Coffee is on Pioneer Street not far from the Hall.
Grady also echoed Smith in his description of some people choosing to avoid the village altogether.
“A lot of the locals seemed to come in early this morning,” said Grady. “I think a lot of people felt like they weren’t going to be able to move within the village, so they decided to stay home.”
Carmen Esposito’s Italian Ice is another business that is located in downtown Cooperstown. With the crowds lining up to enter the HOF and see the president practically at Carmen Esposito’s door, followed by those waiting outside to protest or catch a glimpse of the commander-in-chief, the business had a good day.
“Today we’ve been busier than we would have,” said Matthew DeVincenzo, owner of Carmen Esposito’s. “It’s a good thing all around.”
He also expressed a favorable view on the visit in general.
“Any publicity, any hype for the town is always positive,” said DeVincenzo. “We look forward to any positive outcome as far as … tourism.”
Nick Slentz, an employee at Schneider’s Bakery, which is farther away from the HOF than Carmen Esposito’s or Stagecoach Coffee, described the day as a business wash. He said that it was slower in the morning, but that protesters helped make up for the slow start later on in the day.