BRAZOS COUNTY — This Labor Day weekend marked the first Texas A&M football game of the season bringing thousands of new patrons to Bryan-College Station businesses.
“Saturday was super busy for us," said Mary House, owner of Curious Collections record store in Bryan. "I turned around and we had 15 people in the store, and it was awesome. As a small business owner that survived the pandemic and everything else, it’s good to see.”
Curious Collections draws interest from varying demographics and age groups. House said its special appeal has helped them continue to be fully staffed with ambitious employees for busy weekends such as this.
“This is a fun place to work," she commented. It’s music all the time, it’s vinyl all the time, talking to people about their collection and turntable setup. People just love to talk about music, and that’s what we get to do all day long.”
Just a short drive down Texas Avenue from Curious Collections is Harvey Washbangers, a unique restaurant-laundromat combo. General manager Michael Lair said there was no shortage of people needing to eat a hot meal and wash clothes this weekend.
“Whenever there’s a Monday holiday, that always gives us a good little bump," Lair said. "It’s almost an extra day of the weekend. It’s really good.”
Some restaurants have reported suffering during busy days with limited staff during a widespread workforce shortage. Lair explained that Harvey Washbangers has done its best to provide excellent service while not overwhelming the staff on hand.
“The federal unemployment boost just ended, and we’re all hoping that’s going to be a big boost to the labor market because it is super tight right now," said Lair. "There are a lot of restaurants having to cut hours or limit menu items. Luckily we have been fortunate enough to have a great staff and we’ve been able to hold on to them.”