PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The madness of the NCAA Tournament has made its way to Pittsburgh.
Brackets are set for March Madness, and the men tip off on Friday, while the women's Division III is set for Thursday's semifinals, with the championship game to follow on Saturday.
Experts estimate that businesses in the Pittsburgh area could see about $10.5 million this weekend.
With the women's and men's basketball tournaments rotating playing days starting Thursday, hotels are booked and restaurants will be full.
The DIII women's tournament is set to crown its first champion since 2019, and this is the first full-house men's tournament action since the COVID-19 pandemic began.
Jennifer Hawkins, the Executive Director of SportsPITTSBURGH, said people are excited to travel and experience the games once again.
"Such a large part of the country is vaccinated, and we're seeing a reduction of the Omicron variant, so people are ready to be back inside again," she said. "They want to be at the first real March Madness back."
Pittsburgh's economic boost is set to keep growing over the next few years with several more college basketball tournaments coming.
for more features.