OK, sure, not all the students planning to cheer on their basketball teams in the NCAA Tournament were that thrilled to spend spring break in Spokane instead of San Diego or Orlando.
But a lot of the people who were forced to spend time in Spokane this past week for the NCAA Tournament games — they had a great time. Between the NCAA games and the giant youth volleyball tournament, thousands of extra people were in town and practically every hotel in the county was full. And Spokane rose to the occasion by putting on the nicest version of its mid-March self. The weather was pretty, the falls were roaring and the downtown was so walkable.
My 2 favorite first weekend NCAA sites: Spokane & Boise. Both easy to navigate - no car needed - good grub and can run along rivers. Epic— George Dohrmann (@georgedohrmann) March 20, 2014
Journalists walking from downtown to the Spokane Arena enjoyed the falls:
Spokane Falls. Wow. Niagra, you have a challenger.— Dennis Dodd (@dennisdoddcbs) March 20, 2014
Spokane River on walk to arena... Looks real good to a NorCal guy staring at a drought pic.twitter.com/ftLbNq314N— Ted Robinson (@tedjrobinson) March 22, 2014
Crisp, clear morning in Spokane ... Now to spend the next 10 hours indoors watching hoops pic.twitter.com/FaUTwoA9A6— Tim Booth (@ByTimBooth) March 20, 2014
Spokane is nice. pic.twitter.com/P3bRC9XzU8— Brandon Jason Sosna (@bjsosna) March 20, 2014
Gotta respect our waiter in Spokane last night talking hoops he pulled his bracket out of his pocket to update #MSUNCAA— Josh Morton (@JoshJMorton) March 21, 2014
Confession time. I came to town with a bad attitude about Spokane. When I was here 13 years ago, I wasn’t all that impressed. It wasn’t that I didn’t have a good impression of Spokane. It was that I didn’t have a good impression at all.
I was wrong. Spokane is a cool place. I know what my problem was 13 years ago, when I covered the Sooner women in an NCAA regional. We didn’t stay downtown. Didn’t get a feel for the city.
We did this time, and it was great. I’ve written about the Spokane River and the bridges and the falls. An excellent downtown setting, with a vibrancy that you need from downtown.
So, everyone who's here more frequently than once every 13 years — it only took like two days for plenty of people who don't live here to realize we've got it pretty good.