NCAA weekend expected to bring $20M to Indianapolis

INDIANAPOLIS - This weekend's games are expected to bring in tens of thousands of basketball fans to Indianapolis, along with an economic boost in the millions of dollars.

More than 40,000 fans are in Indianapolis this weekend for the NCAA Men's Basketball Sweet Sixteen, and that means money spent on tickets, food, drinks and memorabilia.

But Lucas Oil Stadium won't be the only crowded place. Hotels and restaurants have been focused all week on accommodating the crowds. They know every card swiped and dollar spent adds up in a hurry.

Tourism officials estimate visitor spending to exceed $20 million in the next three days.

"This is a blockbuster weekend, and when you look at the teams that are coming to Indianapolis, it's a perfect bracket," said Chris Gahl, spokesman for Visit Indy.

Tickets for Friday's session were selling for well above face value. The Indianapolis Department of Code Enforcement planned to be out on the streets undercover Friday to crack down on illegal scalpers and people selling counterfeit tickets.

Code Enforcement officers were warning fans that all licensed ticket brokers will have credentials with the insignia of DCE, the Dept. of Code Enforcement, the NCAA and other security measures.

"They can walk up to the ticket broker selling tickets and say, hey, let me see your license," said a DCE spokesman. "If the ticket broker shows them this they can trust that they are going to buy from a reputable dealer and their ticket is going to be legit."

Brokers are also required to keep a certain distance from the stadium. If they don't, they could get busted and slapped with a $2,500 fine.

Print this article Back to Top