BLACKSBURG, Va. (WDBJ7) From Buffalo to Blacksburg, the Hokie Nation is preparing for a moment many students have never experienced at Virginia Tech.
Like any big sporting event, downtown restaurants and bars are bracing for big crowds.
Virginia Tech found earlier this week the team is playing Thursday night. You do the math - that gave restaurants only a matter of days to get prepared for big crowds.
"We've been doing this for a long time," said Brian Lauby, the bar manager at Hokie House in downtown Blacksburg.
He is allowed to be 100 percent confident that his staff is ready.
"Make sure you have all your beer, liquor, staff accordingly," Lauby said.
Barely anyone was the in restaurant when we did the interview. It was the calm before the storm. Behind the scenes, throughout the town, managers are making last minute scheduling arrangements, and counting their kegs twice to make sure there's enough for a late night.
"We'll have our normal happy hour but with a 9:40 tip it's going to keep a lot of people in here and be busy pretty much all night," Lauby said.
Students can't help but take a break between classes to catch up on games. And count the hours until the Hokies play.
"There's definitely an energy on campus. People are excited about it," Zach Perhach, a sophomore, said.
WDBJ7 spoke with students part of Virginia Tech's official student section cheering squad.
"I think for the first time ever we don't want our team to come home all season. They can stay in Buffalo as long as they want," Kirsten Crofford, a senior, said.
After 10 years waiting, staff members can't help but be excited too.
"Having that camaraderie in the office is really great too because everyone's been waiting for this moment," Samantha Rich, an employee at The Inn At Virginia Tech, said.
Some restaurants created specials for tonight to entice even more people to come out.
This isn't the last big event this week. Friday is St. Patrick's Day and one of the busiest days of the year for restaurants here.