MINNEAPOLIS (FOX 9) - After years of planning, the Final Four has come and gone. With crews packed up and the city returning to normal, attention has turned to the economic impact of the event.
While official estimates won’t be available for six to eight weeks, local restaurants said the event gave a major boost to their bottom line.
“For that type of business, this time of year—it’s unheard of,” said Vice President of Hospitality for Surly Brewing Company Dan Dinovis.
While the Surly tap room isn’t close to US Bank Stadium or official events downtown, employees said it was a record weekend. On Sunday, the brewery ran out of barbecue—something they say has never happened—and their upstairs pizza restaurant marked one of its busiest days on record.
“I think we sold around 800 pizzas which is insane for a little 100 seat restaurant,” said Dinovis. “The influx of people was remarkable.”
The Newsroom restaurant in downtown Minneapolis said revenue was up more than 200 percent compared to a regular weekend. The restaurant, which is located on Nicollet Mall, said alcohol sales especially boosted revenue.
“We feel at the local organizing committee that what we wanted to see, we saw, and then some,” said Final Four Organizing Committee chair Kate Mortenson.
The committee estimated the event would bring 142 million dollars to the local economy. An outside firm was hired to conduct interviews and run numbers through the weekend. Those tallies will be available in six to eight weeks.
“I’m confident that we will see a significant return on the investment that has been made by the city and by the stadium,” said Mortenson.