The annual Walmart Shareholder’s meeting kicks off this week, and thousands of Walmart associates will be in Northwest Arkansas for the occasion.
Businesses owners on Dickson Street in Fayetteville said the visitors bring a big boost to the area.
Local bar manager Spencer Hastings said his bar, Mickey Finn’s Irish Pub, will be packed with people from all over the world.
“We sell a ton of beer, a lot of Budweiser’s and a lot American beer,” Hastings said.
He said meeting people from all over the world is another bonus to the boost in revenue.
“It’s interesting and we usually have to staff up a little bit, and you’re just busy all day,” Hastings said, ” And people want to ask you questions, and it’s cool you get to see all different kinds of money.”
Hastings said they keep a jar at Mickey’s of different country’s currencies that Walmart associates have given them over the years. He said people visiting love asking about life in Fayetteville, and talking about their experiences in their home countries.
“They’ll teach you the different drinking customs from their countries and everybody has a song, and by the end of it you kind of learn all the different countries songs and chants,” Hastings said.
Cole Stocking recently started a transit business in Fayetteville called Piggy Back. He said he and his colleagues are excited for what they hope to be a busy week of publicity for his business.
He said they have only been operating Thursday-Saturday, but they are going to be full time when the Walmart associates are in the area next week.
“We are going to run every day, all day, and once we figure out the events schedule we will be able to rock n’ roll,” Stocking said.
He said he will enjoy partnering with the bars and businesses on Dickson Street for what he hopes is a big boost in business.
“I hope so, that’s the plan, and to get a lot of exposure, to see a lot of people, to talk to a lot of people,” Stocking said, “That’s what we love to do, we love to entertain, we love to boost business for these places, and we love talking to people so yeah it should be great.”
Last year there were more than 14,000 associates that visited Northwest Arkansas.
The shareholder’s meeting will be Friday, May 6. It will be held at the Bud Walton Arena on the University of Arkansas Campus.