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Orchard Park reacts to Bills stadium deal

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Posted at 11:19 PM, Mar 28, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-28 23:19:39-04

ORCHARD PARK, (NY) WKBW — State and local leaders are declaring victory, and so are Orchard Park businesses near the stadium.

“We kept our fingers crossed during the whole process,” Big Tree Inn bar tender Larry Dempsey said. “We sweated it out a little bit, but we knew this was their home in orchard park.”

Larry Dempsey is a bar tender A Big Tree Inn, and he said the news that the Bills will not be moving downtown is great.

“Everyone’s excited in the area, the fans are excited,” Dempsey said.

Mayor of the Village of Orchard Park, Jo Ann Litwin Clinton said a downtown stadium was an attractive option but now Orchard Park has the chance to develop and expand.

“We would love to see a hotel,” Litwin Clinton said. “We would love to see a Buffalo Bills museum to give the history of the team, the history of the different stadiums.”

Litwin Clinton said part of development means catering to out of town fans.

“If we could have a facility for them to stay in a hotel right there and have different activities, I think they would be here for the weekend,” Litwin Clinton said.

Now that the Bills are locked into Orchard Park for at least three more decades, Litwin Clinton said that creates investment security.

Dempsey said Big Tree Inn is planning expansions now that they know the Bills are staying.

“We’re probably going to be hiring more,” Dempsey said. “We are probably going to do a little expansion.”

Dempsey and Litwin Clinton said right now, no plans are official.

But Litwin Clinton said as part of The Orchard Park Economic Development Committee, she will advocate for a family friendly experience.

“We have a lot of bars over there,” Litwin Clinton. “But we really don’t have a place if you wanted to bring your family that you could totally feel comfortable with.”

Litwin Clinton said she hopes plans for development around the new stadium to begin soon, she said the goal is to have the new additions like a hotel and museum open by 2026 when the new stadium is ready.