Pair of Youth Basketball Tournaments Continue to Grow, Generate Millions for Downtown and Pittsburgh Businesses


Back-to-back basketball weekends at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center expected to produce an estimated $10.3M in direct visitor spend

PITTSBURGH – Basketball fever will infiltrate the David L. Lawrence Convention Center over the next two weeks, as a pair of back-to-back basketball tournaments are expected to bring more than 900 youth teams into Downtown Pittsburgh. According to SportsPITTSBURGH, a division of VisitPITTSBURGH, an estimated 17,500+ visitors are expected to travel into Allegheny County, generating an estimated $10.3 million in direct visitor spend.

First up is the 2023 Western PA Bruins Spring Tip-Off, scheduled for April 14-16. This girls club basketball tournament, run by Pittsburgh native and Executive Director John Tate, returns Downtown for the third consecutive year; it was previously held in multiple gyms across the region.

“We continue to grow and attract more and more competitive teams to Pittsburgh thanks to the Convention Center’s ample size and convenient location,” Tate said. “This year, we’ll be utilizing four halls, as we’re expecting more than 300 teams, a record for the tournament and a jump from the 287 teams that competed last year. I know that Pittsburgh is a special sports city, and it’s great to see these teams and their families return each year.”

Just five days later, 2023 Hoop Group Pittsburgh Jam Fest, hosted in Pittsburgh every year since 2006, will be held at the Convention Center April 21-24. A record 600+ teams are expected to compete in front of NCAA Division I coaches throughout the three-day tournament, with games slated to start as early as Friday morning.

“As event owners, we couldn’t ask for a better host city than Pittsburgh,” Rob Kennedy, President, Hoop Group, said. “Because of the support we receive from the SportsPITTSBURGH team, we’ve seen Hoop Group Pittsburgh Jam Fest grow each year since 2006, and now, it’s one of the largest AAU basketball tournaments in the country.”

“SportsPITTSBURGH is thrilled to welcome back the Western PA Bruins Spring Tip-Off and Hoop Group Pittsburgh Jam Fest. We have developed excellent relationships with John, Rob and their teams over the years, and we take great pride in ensuring they continue to pick Pittsburgh as their host city,” added SportsPITTSBURGH Executive Director Jennifer Hawkins. “As we’ve seen over the last few months, youth, amateur and collegiate sports events are major drivers in Allegheny County’s tourism economy. The economic impacts generated from these two events will be felt across our region.”

Of note, Hoop Group also will host a free youth clinic on Thursday, April 20, from 6-8 p.m. at the Convention Center for youth basketball players in grades 4-8. For more information on this special opportunity, please reach out to

To learn more about these events, please visit

As the sports development division of VisitPITTSBURGH, SportsPITTSBURGH’s primary goal is to attract and host a wide variety of sporting events while providing planners and local stakeholders with the expertise and professionalism required to host a world-class event in the Pittsburgh region.