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Indiana Farmers Coliseum ready to host March Madness games

The venue is about to add another chapter to its rich history.

INDIANAPOLIS — March Madness in Indiana is about to kick off around Indiana.

The excitement is evident in downtown Indianapolis, where, for the first time in months, it’s a busy scene with teams and fans arriving.

Some of the games will be played at the state fairgrounds at Indiana Farmers Coliseum. We asked Executive Director Cindy Hoye what it means to host the big event.

“It’s magical,” Hoye said. “I mean, there’s so much history in this place, and adding another layer of history with the NCAA Tournament, who would have ever thought? So excited.”

Some of the participating teams have already been inside the coliseum for practices. We asked Hoye about the reaction to the historic venue.

“They love the history and they’ve been following along,” said Hoye. We’ve been following the teams and what they’ve been talking about, and they are just grateful to have this special moment in Indianapolis and the added plus of being in a historic building.”

Hoye said preparations for tourney games at the coliseum compares to those for hosting hockey events played there.

“The setup is very similar to what we’ve done already for Indy Fuel hockey games. The Indiana Farmers Coliseum is very much focused on having a safe environment for our customers and for the athletes, so we’ve just layered the NCAA requirements on top of requirements we’ve already been doing and the protocols that have already existed.”

Hoye, who has been with the fairgrounds for over 30 years, says they’re excited about having the national spotlight aimed at Indiana.

“It gives me goosebumps,” she said. “When Selection Sunday happened and there was a flyover over the Indiana State Fair, Indiana Farmers Coliseum, it brought tears to my eyes. It’s such a wonderful building with so many stories and it’s just another chapter in our history.”