(WICHITA, Kan.)—Leagues play nightly at Stix in south Wichita. But the owner says lately, there have been more empty tables. His regulars cut back on the money they spend on entertainment.
"We watch them when we're here every week and they are die hard customers," said Joe Boucher. "Now they only come in every other week."
Boucher knows many of them have lost their jobs, like thousands of other Wichitans, and are having trouble finding work.
"I thought okay, how do I combine entertainment with ability to expose them to employers that might be looking for a job," wondered Boucher.
He came up with the idea of an unemployment league, so to speak. For two bucks a week, people can play and have the chance to get hired.
"If we can structure this right, we can get potential employers down here, or even people to help them with their resume," he thought.
Stix was hoping to start the league this week, but there's not enough people to get it going yet. Boucher believes if it all comes together, it could make a difference.
"If we get that one person a job, once they get back on their feet, this will become their hangout," Boucher said.
Because like many of his regulars, the pool hall is struggling too. Boucher hopes this league can be the answer to both problems.
The league will be open to all, not just the unemployed. Stix needs eight teams of four players each. It hopes to start the league on September 13th.