The Chicago Blackhawks Stanley Cup victory in Boston in 2013 is a moment many Chicagoans won’t forget, but the after-party celebrations turned into a scene some wish they could. Now, with the Hawks just one win away from taking home another Stanley Cup, many business owners are preparing for another round of rowdy celebrations.
“There was chaos going around and there was a lot of people affected by it,” said Hussam Alkhabitm, owner of the 40sTF restaurant on Clark Street.
Hussam and many business owners in Wrigleyville said they're hoping history doesn’t repeat itself Monday, should the Blackhawks win in Game 6.
This year, the Hawks have a chance at clinching the Stanley Cup at home, something the team hasn’t done in nearly 80 years and many are preparing for what could happen in the city.
Adding to the potential celebrations in Wrigleyville is a Chicago Cubs game scheduled for Monday at Wrigley Field.
“This will be the place to be because it’ll be so much fun,” said fan Jeff Altschul. “If they win here, or at the UC, this whole place from the UC down here north and west is going to be crazy.”
Bars in Wrigleyville were already preparing for the possible celebrations over the weekend, and some say they met with Chicago police last week to discuss a game plan.
“No glassware, use plastic cups, and watch your occupancy,” said Sluggers bar owner Steven Strauss.
Businesses in the area say they were told there would be an elevated police presence on Clark Street Monday.
Police on Sunday said in a statement that they don’t expect the situation to get out of hand, should a win take place Monday.
“The Chicago Police Department's top priority is protecting and keeping its residents safe,” the statement read. “At this point, we expect no significant issues if a certain Chicago team happens to win a certain trophy tomorrow night.”
Last week, Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy said the department has been working on a safety plan for months.
The last time a Chicago team won a championship in Chicago was in 1997 when Michael Jordan led the Bulls to win the NBA Finals.