NCAA Tournament: Milwaukee gets estimated $6.5M boost, 18K visitors

The NCAA Tournament continues at Fiserv Forum on Sunday, March 20 – the Wisconsin Badgers battle Iowa State before Texas takes on Purdue.

There has been a lot of Wisconsin red in downtown Milwaukee over the weekend – but there are fans from across the country enjoying the experience.

"Yesterday, nobody seemed to mind, but now Wisconsin fans are giving me a look today," said Garrett Hove, an Iowa State fan.

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The Deer District put up "Home of the Badgers" signs, but that isn't stopping other fans from representing their teams. 

"We are die-hard Purdue University fans, so ‘Boiler Up,’" Katie Sermershein said.

"It’s been awesome. The city of Milwaukee is great, and what I’ve noticed, too, is even if you’re not a Badger fan, they’re welcoming to everybody," said Garrett Carlson, a fan from Rockford, Illinois.

VISIT Milwaukee estimates 18,000 people traveled to Milwaukee for the tournament. Saturday's day off gave them a chance to explore.

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"We’re staying at Brewhouse Inn & Suites, so we’ve just been walking around, even in the cold rain, just having a good time," Katrina Carlson, also of Rockford, said.

Badgers fans may have even won over a few in the process.

Bucky Badger at Fiserv Forum for the 2022 NCAA Tournament

"I picked them in my bracket, so yes. I would be afraid to not root for the Badgers," said Katrina.

VISIT Milwaukee estimates the economic impact of this year's tournament is $6.5 million – more than Game 6 of the NBA Finals in 2021, which the Bucks won to claim the title.

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NCAA Tournament: Badgers outlast Colgate, will face Iowa State

The Wisconsin Badgers beat Colgate in the first round of the NCAA Tournament at Fiserv Forum on Friday. They will play Iowa State in the next round.