Center Of the Universe Festival Gives Local Businesses Boost
Thousands of people swarmed into the Brady District for day two of the Center of the Universe Festival. Thanks to all the music fans, local businesses are seeing an economic boost.
"We saw a lot of people last night. The crowds are a little more spread out this year than last year so it's a little different,"said Kenny Hopkins, General Manager at Hey Mambo.
Hopkins said so far, he's noticed there was more of economic boom last year, but he's hoping for a successful Saturday night. Hopkins said he believes sales are a bit lower this year because his restaurant is inside the event gates. Meaning residents who just want to eat at a restaurant in the Brady District while the festival is going on, actually have to buy a ticket to the festival. Where as last year admission was free.
Some restaurants in Downtown have extended their hours until 2 a.m. in hopes of bringing in more bucks.
"I know that the traffic of people trying to get into the concert its just spilling over into all of Downtown. I have heard so many great things. I know the bartenders are just ecstatic this weekend," said Stefanie Sinclair, festival's spokesperson.
Sinclair said ticket sales reveal about 18,000 people poured into the Brady District on Friday night. Many of them from out of state.
"I can definitely tell you we had people from out of state because as I was leaving last night I ran into people from Kansas City, Texas," Sinclair said.
Center of the Universe co-founders Philip Kaiser and Chris Lieberman provided the following statement based on the success of the 2014 festival.
"Great communities have great music festivals and Tulsa has shown there is a strong demand for events like Center of the Universe Festival. 37,000 people attended this year's event and we are so appreciative of the support we received from the community. This event is not possible without the support of our generous sponsors and the hundreds of dedicated volunteers who work tirelessly to provide a great experience for music fans. We are pleased to have another successful year behind us and look forward to a great experience in 2015."
Last year there was no dollar amount on how much the festival brought into Tulsa, but Visit Tulsa is working on gathering that information at this years festival. Vice President of Visit Tulsa, Michael Carter said they are conducting surveys when people come in and out of the event.
"We also have our mobile visitor center where we are doing these same surveys to try and collect data and get the number of nights people are staying, how many people in their party. Just asking different questions. What zip code they are form. So we can put a dollar amount on this event," Carter said.
Visit Tulsa predicts the data will show the festival brings millions of dollars into Downtown Tulsa.