Decade of events: Wichita businesses talk about the impact Intrust Bank Arena has made

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WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Ten years, hundreds of shows, and millions of dollars in revenue. It doesn’t matter whether it is a game day or concert night, businesses in downtown Wichita feel a rush from Intrust Bank Arena events.

“They are fantastic for business,” said Jennifer Rutledge, general manager of Pour House ICT.

The different styles of music, shows, and events led to one business to bring its own flavor downtown in November.

“There’s a lot of peoples here who never tried the food before so that’s why we give them a little piece of it downtown, where most the event taking place,” said Sorrel Rhoden, owner of Sorrel’s Jamaican Food.

While some teams battle on the court at Intrust, Rhoden says they battle it out on the asphalt.

“Some of them do not wanna pay. They wanna use our parking space and just run over there to watch the game and we lose customers that way,” he said.

A new study is showing the economic impact of Intrust Bank Arena since it opened a decade ago.

Over the years, they have hosted nearly 900 events with 3.8 million people attending shows.

“Definitely a plus, I think there are certain nights, of course in every business that has a little bit of a downtime and Intrust Bank Arena definitely helps,” said Rutledge.

The owner of Public at the Brickyard, Brooke Russell, says events on weeknights are especially helpful.

“We have KISS coming up at Intrust on Wednesday and that’s gonna be an awesome Wednesday for us,” she said. Rutledge from Pour House agreed, “We will see a really good pop for that.”

The study says the arena has generated nearly $17 million worth of new economic activity each year. Businesses count on that revenue and for the shows to keep coming to town.

“It means that we can hire more employees. It means that we can put money back into our business,” said Russell.

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