Country concert and college hoops highlight busy weekend downtown

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ST. LOUIS – Three major events in downtown St. Louis will make for a busy weekend for businesses including packed parking lots and garages.

The single largest event of the weekend is the sold-out Garth Brooks concert happening at The Dome at America’s Center. With more than 70,000 people expected to attend, it is the largest show in the venue’s history.

During a press conference Friday (March 8), Brooks said he and Missouri go way back. He referred to a show in Cape Girardeau as one of the hardest and best of his life. He told reporters his brother had been stationed at Fort Leonard Wood and his mother is from Kansas City.

Brooks said he has a lot of good memories in Missouri.

“I think my greatest (memories) have to be getting to play here,” said Brooks. “Those moments. So you look at St. Louis, you look at Kansas City. You do not do a tour without those two cities. You just don’t. If you do, you’re going to rob yourself of some of your best times.”

Doors to the concert will open at 5 p.m. The show starts at 7 p.m.

Local bars and restaurants are thrilled for the jam-packed weekend. Game 6 Honky Tonk Joint is hoping to attract some of those Garth Brooks fans.

“We’re really excited,” said Ryan Binkley, owner of Game 6. “Country music fans everywhere, all over the region, are going to be down here, and obviously, that’s what we specialize in, country music. We’re going to have bands tonight, tomorrow, a ton of people down here, we can’t wait. It’s going to be fun.”

An estimated 45,000-50,000 people will attend the Missouri Valley Conference basketball tournament at Enterprise Center. Teams are competing for automatic entry into the NCAA tournament.

This big event is often referred to as ‘Arch Madness’ because it has been held in St. Louis since 1991. Tournament Director Jack R. Watkin says while the location is convenient for teams traveling in from across the region, it is the people in St. Louis that keeps bringing the tournament back.

“This city really embraces the sport of basketball, and you can tell our teams are always jacked up to be here,” said Watkin. “It’s quite the tournament experience.”

The 42nd Annual Builders St. Louis Home & Garden Show is underway at America’s Center. The event brings together nearly 400 exhibitors and 1,400 booths with every product and service to improve a home inside and out.

The event runs 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday.

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