Marsh Madness positive economic impact in Lake Charles

Published: Mar. 10, 2022 at 8:57 PM CST
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Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) - Let the games begin! Marsh Madness, the state high school basketball championship tournament is hosted in Lake Charles, and the games boost the Lake Area’s economy.

The tournament kicked off earlier this week at Burton Coliseum, bringing in people from across Louisiana, and it gives them a chance to experience Lake Charles.

“One thing about Lake Charles, the people are nice here they’re very hospitable,” Wossman High School coach Casey Jones said.

Jones said this is his team’s seventh consecutive year coming to Lake Charles for Marsh Madness.

“It’s not about just coming to the game. We’re going to explore Lake Charles. We’re going to do things while we’re here. It’s know, they get our pockets,” Wossman fan Stacie Millikin said.

Thousands of fans like Millikin, along with athletes and school officials, all made their way to the Lake Area where some are staying in hotels for the week and dining at Southwest Louisiana restaurants.

“I love the food down here. I’ve been here several years as you know Bossier High has a pretty decent basketball team. So, we’ve eaten at several places. Great food.” Bossier High School assistant principal Michele Tugwell said.

Though they’re all here for basketball, they’re visit has a positive impact on the local economy.

“I mean anytime you have communities that are ravaged by natural disasters, still waiting on funding, and anytime you can get people from outside of the community and spend their tax dollars and their money in the community, it helps out a lot,” Donaldsonville fan Barry Wittington said.

The Lake Charles Convention and Visitors Bureau said this event will bring in millions of dollars to the Lake Area.

“It’s awesome to get to roll out the red carpet for these teams and the people coming in to cheer them on...their coaches, just everybody around the state and get them to see what we love about Southwest Louisiana, you know, we get to share our backyard with them a little bit and it’s always a great experience anytime we get to bring these into town,” Eric Zartler with Visit Lake Charles said.

For scores and updates on the tournament games, CLICK HERE.

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