INDIANAPOLIS - Peyton Manning’s return to Indianapolis is bringing more than just hype – it’s bringing dollars to the Circle City.
City tourism officials know Manning’s return will offer a strong economic boost to hotels and restaurants across the city.
"And we can attribute that directly to the Peyton Effect. The fact that regional tourists are coming to Indianapolis to be a part of the action, whether they have a game ticket or not, they want to be part of this memorable moment in Indianapolis history," said Chris Gahl with Visit Indy.
Manning’s reign was epic and his return is highly anticipated. Officials with Visit Indy said hotel bookings started spiking for this weekend the moment the NFL schedule came out.
"Normally Sunday and Monday nights are the toughest to fill in terms of hotel rooms. Last year on the same Sunday night, our downtown hotels had 57 percent occupancy. You fast forward this year, they're virtually sold out -- 99.9 percent occupied," Gahl said.
Some hotels are getting double their normal rates, and restaurants like the Indianapolis Colts Grille are looking forward to a packed house, not just Sunday, but all weekend long.
"This is the biggest thing since the Super Bowl, so just right along the same lines. We expect to be very busy starting really tomorrow night. Along with the Do It Best Convention in town, it's going to be a huge weekend," Adam Bianco with the Indianapolis Colts Grille said.
He said the restaurant has increased food and drink orders as well as staffing. The restaurant is giving away tickets to the game Saturday night, and they expect the crowds to stick around for their big charity event Monday.
"We are giving all the proceeds we get on Monday to the IU Health Simon Cancer Center," Bianco said.
Hotels owners agreed, it's not just a one-day phenomenon. They said bookings are above average for Saturday and Monday nights too.
City leaders don't have an exact number, but they said the Peyton Effect will likely bring an economic boost in the seven figures.