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Utah Travel Headlines

Monday, March 22, 2010

Sweet 16 Games Come To Salt Lake City

NCAA West Region semifinal Sweet 16 college basketball games will be played in Energy Solutions Arena in Salt Lake City on March 25 and 27.

On Thursday, Syracuse will take on Butler and Xavier will face Kansas State. The winners of those two games will battle it out on Saturday.

Energy Solutions is located in downtown Salt Lake City, close to Temple Square and the Gateway Mall. Thousands of people are expected to be in the city to take part in or watch the tournament, so hotels and restaurants in the downtown area may be crowded.

Streets around Energy Solutions Area will be busy before and after games. But that is not an unusual occurrence, since the NBA Jazz play there are regularly pack the house.

The Salt Lake Tribune has this article about the tournament. Below are excerpts.

For the first time in nearly 30 years, local fans will see something more than just first and second-round games, with four teams coming to town for the West Regional portion of the Sweet 16 at EnergySolutions Arena - arguably the biggest college hoops event in Utah since the legendary 1979 Final Four that pitted Magic Johnson and Larry Bird at the Huntsman Center and launched a new era in college basketball.

The event is massively popular, with tickets in the upper bowl going for no less than about $100 apiece at online resellers. City tourism officials expect it to generate $8 million to $9 million for the local economy - equivalent to about half of the annual Outdoor Retailer trade show.

"Of course, the exposure is going to be pretty difficult to beat," said Shawn Stinson of the Salt Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau.

The Deseret News has this breakdown of the upcoming games.

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