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From the Fort Worth Stockyards to Dealey Plaza, Final Four fans big business for local tourism

The people wandering through the Sixth Floor Museum on the corner of Dealey Plaza on Saturday made it perfectly clear who was playing in the Final Four.

One college student sported a bowtie with the familiar logo of Florida as he peered at the spot where Lee Harvey Oswald fired those fateful shots. An older couple in Kentucky blue and white observed the "x'' on the pavement where John F. Kennedy was shot. Gentlemen in Wisconsin coveralls and a youngster wearing a UConn hat meandered toward the famed grassy knoll.

All of them taking in a little history as their teams capped historic seasons.

Local organizers said last fall they expect the Final Four to generate about $180 million for Dallas, and another $50 million for Arlington, the nearby city where AT&T Stadium is located.

The early crowds around town appeared to back up those estimates.

It helps that the cavernous home of the Dallas Cowboys could establish a new attendance record, and that none of the schools are local. So rather than fans dashing in for the game and then heading right home, they're spending money in hotels and restaurants.

Several fans told The Associated Press on Saturday morning that they had just arrived at the museum dedicated to Kennedy's assassination from a trip to the Fort Worth Stockyards, another popular tourist destination. Many were also planning to make the short walk to Bracket Town, the interactive experience set up for fans of all ages.

— Dave Skretta — https://twitter.com/apdaveskretta

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NCAA Finals Watch follows the Final Four games and all the activities surrounding the event as seen by journalists from The Associated Press in North Texas — from the big stadium in Arlington where the games will be played to downtown Dallas. It will be updated throughout the day with breaking news and other items of interest. Follow AP reporters on Twitter where available.

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