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Between Harvard crimson and Yale blue, New Haven merchants will be seeing plenty of green this weekend.
Thousands of undergraduates and alumni from both schools will attend The Game, and all of them will need to be entertained and fed--usually pizza.
Tony Trifitira, manager of Naples Pizzeria, is looking forward to a long and lucrative weekend.
"We'll be doing triple the business we usually do," he said yesterday. "We're working all day, getting everything ready."
Francis R. Rosselli, manager of Pepe's Pizza, had similarly high hopes for The Game.
"We're always busy on the Yale-Harvard weekend," he said.
Like Trifitira, he's not offering any special deals, just waiting for the hungry hordes to arrive.
"For us, it's just business as usual. We hope some people will come down from Sally's if it's too busy," he said, referring to yet another area pizzeria.
Sally's manager Rick E. Consiglio said he expected the weekend would bring crowds.
"We'll be waiting," he said.
Toad's Place, a New Haven club, is doing more than just waiting. The club offered a "Yale Harvard Fabulous Friday Night Dance Party," featuring music and cheap drinks.
The prognosis at Louie's Lunch was not as bright.
"With both teams not being as good as usual, it dims the rivalry a little," said co-owner Jeff W. Lasser. That means fewer students eating Louie's food.
Several other New Haven merchants cited the teams' subpar records--Harvard is 3-6 overall, 1-5 Ivy League; Yale is 2-7, 1-5--as a reason the game might be poorly attended.
Harvard ticket office employees could not offer solid estimates of how many of the 8,000-10,000 tickets allotted to Harvard were sold by yesterday, and said they would not have concrete figures until sometime next week.
Predictions for the score of The Game varied, with several bold enough to risk the displeasure of their clientele by calling for a Crimson victory.
Not Jeff Grubler, manager of Bar, "probably the only cool place to go in New Haven," who risks more than losing business.
"I have a couple of Yale football players working for me, so if I bet against them they'll rough me up," he said.
Grubler said he hadn't noticed a Harvard presence in New Haven this week.
"I live downtown, near the campus, and I haven't seen too many Harvard sweatshirts around," he said.
Despite the influx of students and money changing hands, Yale and New Haven police do not plan many special precautions.
"There are a lot of events on campus that we'll be covering with additional officers, but that happens on any weekend," said Yale police lieutenant William F. Holohan.
There will be a steady police presence, Holohan said. On any weekend between 6 p.m. and 2 a.m., there are 15 to 20 police officers working the campus, he noted.
They also planned to send a detail of officers to the Yale Bowl last night "so no criminal mischief will occur," he said.
New Haven police officers will work the game, along with Yale and West haven police, said patrol sergeant John A. Dattilo.
He was not expecting trouble for the rest of the Weekend.
"We feel that there are really more Harvard alumni and older people coming to the Harvard-Yale game, who prefer to do their partying before the game," he said.
For some Harvard students, however, the party apparently never ends.
On Thursday night, the Yale University police responded to a call to Sterling Memorial Library with a complaint of an "unwanted turkey," Holohan said.
The turkey, which was removed by two officers without incident, had a note tied around its neck signed by a group calling itself "Harvard H/L".
The note read "You Yalies are all turkeys. See you at The Game."
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