Women's NCAA Tournament; how this and other events in town this weekend will impact the local economy
SOUTH BEND, Ind.-----
A busy weekend is ahead for the City of South Bend and surrounding areas, especially for local bars, restaurants, and hotels.
With the Fighting Irish women's basketball team to host the first round of the NCAA March Madness Tournament Friday at 3:30pm, taking on Southern Utah at home, businesses on Eddy Street are already preparing for a March Madness of their own. Especially, O'Rourke's being just right across the street from Purcell Pavilion that will be packed with fans come Friday.
The general manager, Amber Goddard told ABC57, they are ready to cheer on the Irish,
"Yeah, well we are very excited Notre Dame is hosting the NCAA tournament….and we know that’s going to bring a lot of business so we've added extra staff members on. We're always full of a bunch of people watching and cheering them on…it's just a really fun place to be…especially because they're playing right across the street," she said.
And they have already started to see that increase in business, not just for the game, but also from a 60-team youth hockey tournament taking place in the area, as well as a cheerleading competition, on top of St Patrick's Day, and more.
All this madness, but experts still do not expect to see things get as crazy as a Notre Dame home game weekend,
It'll be good… it'll be big, with the NCAA tournament in town plus the youth hockey, it was already going to be a busy weekend, and this just takes it to that next level, it might not be football-level packed, but its March in South Bend it's always great to have these big crowds coming into town, gives out hotels and restaurants a boost in a time of year that may be a little slower," said Jake Brown, who's charge of marketing and communications for Visit South Bend.
"Few things around here… will have the impact of a football weekend.. just with that huge rush of crowd…but anytime Purcell Pavilion is full.. and it's a lot of out-of-town fans… you have multiple out of town teams…it's going to be very beneficial for many businesses in the area," he added.
And not just for businesses near campus, but all across the area.
"Around campus will be the busiest….I would expect those restaurants to be kind of popping all weekend…I would for sure expect people to make their way to downtown South Bend…maybe even over into Mishawaka".