Sweet 16 expected to bring $5M boost to Memphis economy

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Memphis is taking center stage Friday night as four of the nation's best basketball teams square off inside FedExForum.

North Carolina, Kentucky, UCLA, and Butler are all in town competing for a spot in this year's Final Four.

Top seeded North Carolina will take on Butler at 6 p.m. Then, Kentucky and UCLA will face off at approximately 8:40 p.m.

Thousands of people flocked to the Bluff City to take in the games. Hotels in Downtown Memphis are booked up. The Convention and Visitors Bureau said more than 13,000 people booked rooms in Memphis for this weekend.

Those tourists brought an economic boost to businesses in Downtown Memphis. In fact, The Convention and Visitors Bureau said the Sweet 16 games are expected to bring a $5 million boost to Memphis.

Vice President Mike Pence was expected to be one of those tourists, but he was forced to cancel his trip to Memphis at the last minute. 

With the influx of people coming to Memphis, law enforcement officers said they were taking extra precautions. 

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