Manhattan Goes Wild for March Madness

Published on March 22, 2024

Manhattan, Kansas is gearing up for a significantly busy Friday as two NCAA Division I (W) first-round games – Kansas State vs Portland and Colorado vs Drake – bring a wave of March Madness enthusiasts to The Little Apple. This isn't just good news for sports fans; it's a prime opportunity for businesses near Bramlage Coliseum to capitalize on a surge in local spending.

These are relatively big events for the area, which is predicted to see an economic boost as March Madness enthusiasts flock to the area for the festivities. Between both games that day, fans are expected to drive a combined $811,633 in direct spending on the following local industries:

  • $142,529 on hotels

  • $490,257 on restaurants

  • $178,854 on transportation 

Why these games are particularly impactful in Manhattan, KS

Manhattan, KS has a relatively low population density (around 3,645 people per square mile). This means that even a moderate number of visitors for the games creates a significant percentage increase in the local population. Compare that to Manhattan, NY, with a density of over 72,000 per square mile. In the Big Apple, these games would only be a drop in the bucket.

For a better understanding of the relationship between event impact and population density, imagine adding 10 people to a small town of 100. That would represent a 10% increase! On the other hand, in a giant city of 10,000, adding 10 people is barely a blip. 

Beyond March Madness: A multi-event spending frenzy in the Little Apple

With a smaller local population, most spending for these games will come from out-of-town visitors to Manhattan, KS. This concentrated spending in hotels, restaurants, and transportation translates to a bigger economic boost for local businesses — especially when you consider the other events taking place at the same time, which will compound impact to drive even higher levels of spending:


There are several smaller overlapping events that day, compounding local demand for restaurants, hotels, and transportation in the area, including:

Combined with March Madness, these events push event-based spending in the area to a whopping $854,551 on March 22nd, 2024 — a staggering 188% increase over the average level.

Track impactful events near you

Events are a powerful economic catalyst, generating billions of dollars in spending each year for businesses that are prepared for the influx of visitors. Whether it's a sports event, concert, or other category, events across the globe attract people who are eager to spend money on hotels, restaurants, and transportation.

Get ahead of the curve and tap into event-driven spending with PredictHQ's predictive demand intelligence platform.