MILWAUKEE — The NCAA Tournament at Fiserv Forum brought big business to Milwaukee as thousands of college basketball fans flowed through Deer District to watch the big dance.
Bars and restaurants were packed with excited fans eagerly watching the game glued to every television screen insight. The sounds of cheers echoed through Uncle Bucks, just steps away from where the Badgers faced Iowa State.
"Since the word "go" on Thursday we've been great, people have been fun, people are out, people are spending money," said Ricardo Ramos, manager at Uncle Bucks.
It's a feeling that was very familiar for Deer District.
"It feels like its back to last June and July when the Bucks were winning their title," said Peter Morris, a Badger fan excited to be back out at Mecca.
College basketball fans from all over the country filtered through bars to tune into the game hoping their team makes it to the Sweet Sixteen round. Some even visiting Milwaukee for the first time, Like Eddy Blanton and his family who traveled in from Houston for the weekend.
"Downtown Milwaukee has been fabulous we really like the way you can walk around, everyone has been friendly," said Blanton.
According to Visit Milwaukee, the tournament is estimated to bring in $6.5 million in revenues and about 18,000 fans all of that include hotels, transportation, food, and drinks.
"We've been open from 10 am all 4 of these days and we've had people in from 10 AM and leaving at 2 AM. People that we have up here from other Universities have been very polite and they're having fun and they love the city," said Ramos.
Despite a tough loss for many disappointed Badger fans leaving Fiserv Forum Sunday night, it's still a win regardless for the city's businesses.