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Bars, restaurants around Indy prepared for months to accommodate basketball tournament fans

As teams from Purdue and Indiana have high hopes for this month's games, businesses plan for a rush of fans - and revenue.

INDIANAPOLIS — Local bars and restaurants have worked hard for months to prepare for the flood of basketball fans who want to watch their teams battle it out during March Madness.

"We have enough TV," said Brandon Smith at The Bulldog. "You literally can't sit anywhere without seeing the game on TV."

Smith said they're prepared to be busy the moment they open their doors. They have events planned, like their March Madness tent party for fans who want to watch the big game.

"They're involved, they want to be here and see their teams doing well on the prime time," said Smith.

Smith is a Purdue grad. He said he's proud of how far his team has come but having both IU and Purdue in the tournament is a win for the state.

"When both teams are good, it's great for both schools. It's great for the state. It's great for small businesses," he said.

So great, Smith said they're expecting a huge revenue increase.

"We certainly expect the project income revenue would be double what we normally see on a normal Saturday," he said.

Credit: WTHR

Sophia Wibright with the Garage Food Hall said they're also preparing to see a large crowd in their seats. 

"We are probably pushing a thousand people, for sure," said Wibright.

She said they expect to do well in sales this weekend because they work hard to put on free events like the Bottleworks BBall Bash for customers looking to see the game and enjoy a drink.  

"It's not just us, it's the vendors supporting us. It's a dream we are putting on as a team. It's great," Wibright said.

 Bringing people together is what March Madness is all about.

"There's a sense of belonging in basketball. People in Indiana do find a little bit of Identity in sports," said Wibright. 


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