Chiefs Kingdom ready to cheer on KC, even while balancing playoff thrills during pandemic

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OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — As the Kansas City Chiefs prepare for the AFC Championship, so does Chiefs Kingdom.

Faced with pandemic challenges, everyone is getting into playoff mode. Still, people are ready to raise “cheers” to the Chiefs. 

It may not be Arrowhead Stadium, but general manager Scott Wenta said Maloney’s Sports Bar and Grill is a safe and socially distanced spot to cheer on the Chiefs. They’re heavy on the sanitizing, and tables seat no more than eight. They’re also evenly spaced out and aimed right at one of their more than 54 TVs.

“We’re not going to break any mandates to do it, but we’re still going to put the crowd in here to have the great Chiefs crowd,” Wenta said.

Sadly it looks like there’s rain in the game day forecast. A lot of restaurants and bars across the metro, including Maloney’s, are prepared. They have enclosed outdoor spaces for fans to watch the game. 

“So if Sunday brings inclement weather, we’ve got the garage doors down. We’ve got heat out there. We’ve got tables grouped together for your groups, but they’re also spaced so that you have your individual space as well,” Wenta said.

Last week’s game taught them a lot. They’re bumping up beer and alcohol orders. Wenta said he also learned Chiefs fans can safely celebrate. 

Other fans are choosing to watch with a small group of Chiefs Kingdom at home.

“I’ll be watching the game right next to my beautiful wife Karen here,” Chiefs fan Ed Reese said. “Usually we hang out on Sundays by ourselves.”

It goes beyond coronavirus precautions for Chiefs fan Amy Morris.

“Not super-stitious. We’re a little-stitious,” Morris joked.

She’s watched the team’s winning season and playoff run with the same crew she always has. 

“We can’t change anything. We never change anything,” Morris said. “We wear the same outfits every week.”

By the way, the wings you might normally order will have a different name this weekend. 

“No ‘Buffalo Bills’ this weekend,” Wenta said. “It’s all ‘Chiefs wings.'”

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