Big Ten Championship festivities turn Indy’s downtown streets into full fan fest

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INDIANAPOLIS — The Big Ten Championship Game takes over Indy as Michigan and Iowa fans flood the city’s streets to take part in all the festivities. For the Wolverines, this is their first time in the championship game, while for Iowa, it’s only their second time. The Hawkeye’s last run came in 2015 when they lost to Michigan State.

“Indianapolis is the best host of this game. I was here in 2015, and it was amazing,” says Iowa fan Zach Veigulis, “I hope [this year is] better than last time based on the game outcome.”

Michigan fans are just happy to see rival Ohio State not in the Championship game. The Buckeyes have been in it every year since 2017.

“Ohio State has their car on autopilot down here on I-70, and thank God they are not here this year,” laughs Fishers resident and Michigan fan Jay Angst, “I get out of town when they come in.”

Downtown bars and restaurants remain packed with fans from both teams. On Saturday, Georgia Street will turn into the Meijer Tail Greater Party. In addition to food trucks and live music, there will be a St. Elmo’s shrimp cocktail eating contest featuring famous competitive eater Joey Chestnut. The party goes from 8 am to 10 pm. At the Indiana Convention Center there is Fan Fest.

“[At Fan Fest] you can kick a field goal, run the 40-yard dash, or you can practice your commentating as a sports reporter,” describes Indy Sports Corp Public Relations Director Brett Kramer, “We are trying to host as many ancillary events as possible. We are expecting more than $20 million of economic impact, but then fans go to a local restaurant afterwards, so it’s really stimulating the economy.”

If you have a ticket to the game then Fan Fest is free to enter. Without a ticket, admission is $8 for adults and $4 for kids.

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