Aiken businesses cashing in on Masters week

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Saturday, April 12th, 2014

Aiken, SC (WRDW)- Thousands fly in to experience the Masters.
Instead of dealing with the traffic in August,a some stay in Aiken. One group of Aussies traveled across the globe.

"It's just half an hour run, and we get up and we walk the legendary course and see some legendary players," said Murray Hartin.

Today, the Aussies are watching the Masters from Hotel Aiken.

It's groups like this that bring in major business and keep the hotel booked every year.

"The Australian group, they will book a year out just to come here," said Hotel Aiken employee Bryan Baisley.

"It"s a good place to stay. It's a nice little buffer zone between here and Augusta. It's a beautiful place, and lovely restaurants, and good people," said Murray Hartin.

Once people leave the hotel, they've got to eat, and at Aiken Brewing Company the drinks are flowing, the food is out,
and the room and tables are full.

"The volume during Masters week is about three times what it normally is," said owner Lannie Pruiett.

Masters week is their busiest week of the year.
Business is booming, bringing in a different kind of Masters green.

"It makes a huge difference to Aiken and the whole downtown community," said Pruiett.

Because of the influx, businesses pull together to create the Aiken ambiance that keeps customers coming back.

"All the other restaurants downtown we support each other. If we run out of something, I can go borrow it from Up Your Alley," said Pruiett.

After people eat and drink, they want to shop. A local business's sales are soaring.

"This is basically our second Christmas. We end up doing about the amount that we would do in a week of Christmas," said Van Smith co-owner of Lionel Smith Ltd.

Every business is happy people are here. They say it's not a pain but a pleasure.

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