'Our version of Christmas morning,' March Madness, Con Expo brings economic boost to Las Vegas 

‘Our version of Christmas morning,’ March Madness, Con Expo brings economic boost to Las Vegas 

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LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — March Madness is making a splash in Las Vegas once again, and this year the Con Expo, North America’s largest construction trade show is coinciding with it, bringing an even bigger economic boost. 

“It reminds me of our version of Christmas morning,” basketball fan Trevor Boucher told 8 News Now. 

Boucher is one of many pouring in from across the country to watch college basketball. 

“Since I’ve been 20,” UCLA fan Scott Foley said. “We’ve been coming for March Madness every year.”

The Westgate Sportsbook was packed Thursday night as eager fans showed up to wait with bated breath to see how their bets and brackets fared. 

The Big Dance is always a win for the city, with casinos and sportsbooks cashing in, but this year it also came at the same time as Con Expo. 

“I’ve never seen an expo at the same time as March Madness,” Casey Degnon, Senior Risk Supervisor for Westgate Sportsbook said. “It definitely worked out good for us, I think.”

Degnon called this an even bigger boost for them, with about 130,000 people attending North America’s largest construction trade show next door for the first time since 2020.

“It was almost sad during the pandemic,” Degnon said. “With March Madness, it just wasn’t the same, it’s starting to get back to the way it was before.”

Therefore, as many continue to descend through the weekend and the rest of the month, know they’re bringing plenty of good things to look forward to in this sports state of mind. 

“Everything you ever hear for four straight days,” Boucher concluded. “It’s always basketball.”

Many analysts also said this is the first ‘normal’ Con Expo since 2017, which is when the last trade show happened around the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

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