TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) — “Last week was very exciting because I mean the downtown was buzzing,” Mayor Duke Bennett said.
A buzzing downtown. Thanks to last week’s firefighter convention plus the Missouri Valley Conference Baseball Tournament at Indiana State University (ISU).
“Then, having ISU actually win the tournament and get the draw that they did and to be able to host, I mean, that’s just icing on the cake. And so, I’m looking forward to this weekend,” Bennett said.
Icing on the cake. That’s the 2023 NCAA Baseball tournament coming to Bob Warn Field.
“It’s always great to have schools like Iowa, and North Carolina, and Wright State, all coming to Terre Haute to play. Brings their fans in here and brings the media and it just gives us a chance to, you know, stand out and show what a great community we have. And hopefully, ISU can pull out a few more victories here and move on to the next round,” Bennett said.
More fans are a welcoming sight for Missy Pomeroy, owner of Roly Poly, which sits just over a mile from the ball diamond.
“With ISU in this tournament, it’s amazing for our community. So, we’re hoping it brings in more people from out of town. We’ll actually try to get out there and hand out some fliers and give some coupons to get some people in to see Roly Poly and what we’re about,” Pomeroy said.
Indiana State University was named one of the 16 regional hosts for the tournament. A first in Sycamore’s program history.
“That’s kind of what our goal has been,” Bennett said. “To create these things, these events, the energy, the fun things to do. And just seeing all those people enjoying themselves was awesome.”
The announcement came after the Sycamores’ dominant run that resulted in both the Missouri Valley Conference regular season and postseason championships. Now, another opportunity for a bustling community.
David Patterson, Executive Director of the Vigo County Convention and Visitor’s Bureau, told WTWO that hotels are booked up in light of the upcoming tournament.
“The whole month of May has been very busy around here,” Bennett said. We haven’t had many hotel rooms, seeing the restaurants full and just everyone milling around finding something to do in their spare time, that’s what really this is all about.”
Tournament tickets went on sale Tuesday at 4:00 PM.