According to the Indystar.com's Business section, Indianapolis is expecting 85,000 gamers to converge on the city for Gen Con 08. The article states that gamers will spend about $30,000,000 (yes that is 30 million dollars) at restaurants and shops in Indianapolis and use the equivalent of 16,000 hotel room nights during the 4 days the con is going on. I've seen estimates on other sites that say the total spent by gamers each August is well over $40 million. That is a lot of money brought into the city each year.
The article goes on to discuss the history of the con and the fact that Gen Con has been there since 2003 and will remain until at least 2010. There is a very brief description of what goes on and some mention of the exhibits and companies that will be present. I knew the con was pretty big, but it seems to keep growing. The only thing that bothers me is the fact that I won't be attending this year. If the con only stays in my back yard until 2010, that means I only have 2 more years to enjoy Gen Con because there is no telling where it may move after their commitment to Indy expires. If that happens it looks like I will be attending Origins instead, since it is the closest big con in my area.