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Fort Wayne businesses "paint the town blue" for NCAA tournament

The Rousseau Center was the latest to join the "paint the town blue" festivities.
Zach Bernard/WBOI News
The Rousseau Center was the latest to join the "paint the town blue" festivities.

Businesses around Fort Wayne are “painting the town blue” to celebrate the return of the NCAA Division III Men’s Basketball Tournament.

In 2019, Fort Wayne hosted the Division III Final Four and Championship games at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum. It was the first in a multi-year agreement that made the Coliseum the official home of these final rounds of the D3 tournament.

It has also been the only time Fort Wayne and the Coliseum have actually been able to host the event. Visit Fort Wayne marketing and community manager Jessa Campbell says the return of the games is long overdue.

“We were set to host the 2020 championship and 2021 but, unfortunately, like we all know, they got canceled, so really it’s been three years since we’ve hosted anything and we’re so excited to have the tournament return to Fort Wayne, Indiana,” Campbell said.

To celebrate and promote the start of the tournament itself on Friday, ten businesses and landmarks around downtown changed their light displays to blue throughout the day and evening.

Fort Wayne will host the NCAA Men’s Division III Final Four and Championship games in two weeks, at the Coliseum on March 18 and 19.

Zach joined 89.1 WBOI as a reporter and local host for All Things Considered, and hosted Morning Edition for the past few years. In 2022, he was promoted to Content Director.