Last updated: February 20. 2013 4:46AM - 438 Views

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The week leading up to the Super Bowl translates into super sales for local beer distributors.

Steve Kaschenbach, of Lakeway Beverage in Harveys Lake, said Super Bowl beer sales are among his top-selling weeks, falling just behind Christmas, New Year's and the Fourth of July.

Roseann Williams, owner of Wyoming Valley Beverage in Exeter, said her sales usually increase by 30 percent. She expected to sell at least 1,000 cases of beer from Monday through today.

John Barrett, of Quality Beverage in Laflin, referred to this stretch as the best weekend in January and February, because people associate a Super Bowl party with enjoying a few beverages.

It's the biggest sporting event of the year and the type of occasion people get together and have a party — beer is a part of the equation, he said.

Barrett considers the Super Bowl a recession-proof week, and said that people are going to still buy beer for their parties, even if it means trading a more expensive beer for a domestic brew. Barrett cites Miller Lite as being his top-selling domestic.

Williams believes domestics always are a popular choice during the week of the big game because they're crowd-pleasers, while imports and craft beers draw specific tastes.

While Cheryl Wright of City Beverage in Wilkes-Barre feels the Super Bowl is the most important weekend, she said overall sales have declined over the past few years. She cites grocery stores like Weis and Wegmans, which both have beer sections, as part of the reason why distributor sales have been down.

Party-supply stores also see more customers as they want to decorate their party rooms and use matching paper and plasticware. But like beer sellers and some other businesses, the economy has hurt sales in recent years.

Karen Rubasky, an owner of Plains Paper Co., said sales have declined in recent years; she blamed the rough economy. She said some people are now using their disposable income for bills instead of parties.

She said the fact that neither team in the Super Bowl has a fan base in Northeast Pennsylvania also is a factor.

Rubasky called the 2009 Super Bowl featuring the Pittsburgh Steelers incredible for business.

But the San Francisco 49ers and the Baltimore Ravens just don't hold that kind of sway in this part of the country.

Rubasky also said Super Bowl weekend is a vital for the early sales report, though it does lag behind the winter and summer holidays. This past week saw sales spike 40 to 50 percent compared to a typical week.

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