• Businesses see 25% increase while thousands of basketball fans support AAC semifinals

    By: Siobhan Riley


    MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Businesses are seeing a nearly 25% increase in their bottom line this week while thousands of basketball fans support the AAC semifinals.

    Memphis played Houston at 2 p.m.

    FOX13 spoke with restaurant owners and other companies who said they’ve had a full house since Thursday.

    From the St. Patrick’s Day parade on Beale Street to the AAC semifinals, it was clear that businesses felt the economic impact. 

    Meagan May with Backbeat Tours said the buses taking visitors around the city to historic sites filled up faster than normal.

    “Our season kind of starts at the beginning of March, but with this tournament, it’s kind of added a little bit extra umph to the beginning of this month, it’s just been really nice,” she said.

    May said customers are taking advantage of coupon deals all week long. 

    “With people coming in they’re looking for something to do while their teams are not playing and so they’re seeing all the attractions and the restaurants and all the deals in all the city savers and so we’ve also seen an uptick in those coupons that we have,” she explained.

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    The owner of the restaurant Miss Polly’s tells says business is up 25%, the line was wrapped outside the door Saturday morning.  We also spoke with visitors from Starkville, Mississippi who said getting a hotel wasn’t easy either. 

    “This is a huge weekend, this is probably like a ballgame weekend in Starkville, all the hotels from what we saw two weeks ago were booked,” said Jim McReynolds. 

    McReynolds got there a few hours before the big St. Patrick’s parade.

    “We got down here early to get a good spot, they beat us,” he said.

    The Tigers versus Houston game started at 2:00 Saturday.

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