March sadness: Basketball tradition halted by Covid-19

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ROTHSCHILD, WIs. (WSAW)-- For as long as he could remember, D.J. Craft enjoyed the NCAA tournament with his friends. But that changes when the tournament was canceled by Covid-19.

To D.J. and his group it was more than just a tournament.

"The only way that you can say it is that it's equivalent to Christmas, one of the most special times of the year," Craft said. "History right before your eyes," he added.

D.J. loves March madness so much, he makes it a point to take off the first two days of the tournament every year.

"Every year when my vacation comes around I make sure that I get these two days, then I worry about the rest of the vacation after that. But it has to be those two days," Craft explained.

When the group found out they couldn't celebrate this year, they were heartbroken.

"It was so deflating," Craft said.

Every years D.J. would spend at least one day watching games with his dad, something that he'll also miss this year.

"It was a special time with my dad. I was the only one with him, he was the only one with me and here we are," Craft added.

D.J. and his group would always go to The Bar in Rothschild, a restaurant that's almost never empty in March.

"This is something that we've never seen before," The Bar owner Jeremy Jakubowski said.

The restaurant is still selling food, but sales numbers are nowhere close to normal.

"We still strive for our food but we've seen the numbers go drastically down," Jakubowski explained.

Jeremy and D.J. are affected by Covid-19 in different ways, but they do both agree on one thing going forward.

"Obviously we just want everyone to be safe, and once this is all over we'll have a pretty big party at the end of this," Jakubowski joked.

"There's probably going to be a party before, after, middle it's going to be great. We'll be blessed enough to share them the way we always have," Craft added.

The Bar is still doing pick-up and delivery. For their contact information and other restaurants that are still open click here.

Read the original version of this article at www.wsaw.com.