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Visit Indy expects Final Four to generate millions for economy

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The Visit Indy tourism group is expecting the NCAA Men’s Basketball Final Four to generate more than $70 million dollars for the local economy.

Chris Gahl, Vice President of Visit Indy, says the event could have a long term impact. He says one goal is to persuade visitors to come back to the city.

“Our message will be, if we can host the Final Four, if we can host events like the Indy 500, then we’re confident we can host your convention or event,” Gahl said.

Hyatt Regency, the Westin, and JW Marriott are just a few downtown hotels already full for the first weekend in April.

JW Marriott is the NCAA headquarters hotel. General Manager Phil Ray says the hotel was booked full months ago with sponsors, media and fans.

“As a sports fan, it’s great. Indy does Final Four like nobody else. Our team gets excited, so from a staff perspective, we’re excited,” Ray said.

Gahl says some suburban hotels are also starting to fill.