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Men's Final Four in Houston updates: Fans getting ready for Megan Thee Stallion show

Follow along with live updates of all the big moments and highlights from Day 1 of this weekend's events.

HOUSTON — Final Four weekend is here as Houston welcomes tens of thousands of fans with some good old-fashioned Texas hospitality.

No game ticket? No problem! There are plenty of other things to do in H-Town this weekend, including the March Madness Music Festival and Fan Fest.

Follow along with live updates of all the big moments from Day 1 of this weekend's events.

3:58 p.m. : The line to see Friday night's March Madness Music Festival concert is moving.  People started to line up at 7 a.m. Gates were supposed to open at 4 p.m., but didn't open until 4:30 p.m. 

2:30 p.m. Fans lining up for the March Madness Music Festival are chanting 'Megan, Megan, Megan' for Megan Thee Stallion, the headliner for the first night of the March Madness Music Festival.

Inside, here's what the stage looks like

2:24 p.m.: At NRG Stadium, the four teams in town for the Final Four took to the hardwood for practice before tomorrow's games.


2 p.m.: Jim Nantz reacts to getting a key to the City of Houston. Nantz will call his last Final Four game.


2:15 PM: People lined up at Discovery Green in downtown Houston waiting to go in to see Megan Thee Stallion.

1:25 PM: Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner presented a key to the city to announcer Jim Nantz and declared April 1 "Jim Nantz Day" in Houston.

1:20 PM: The Miami Hurricanes have hit the court at NRG Stadium for their open practice this afternoon.

NOON: It's time for the San Diego State Aztecs to hit the court for their open practice, including Houston native and graduate of The Kindcaid School, Jaedon LeDee.

11:20 AM: The UConn Huskies will have their fur-ever friend in Houston for the Final Four!

After worrying for a few days about whether UConn mascot Jonathan would be able to fly out and meet the team, the Husky flew into H-Town on Thursday.

READ: UConn's beloved husky mascot is heading to Houston

11:05 AM: The Florida Atlantic Owls were to first to hit the court at NRG Stadium for open practices this morning.

10 AM: KHOU 11's Adam Bennett got a good look at the line of fans waiting to get into NRG Stadium for today's open practices. Check out his time-lapse video.

7:30 AM: The KHOU 11 Morning News team made a new friend this morning at the George R. Brown Convention Center. Meet Kamp. He is one of the K-9 units working to keep fans safe during this weekend's events. His smelling sense is 200,000 times stronger than a human's. Thank you Kamp for your service.

READ: Final Four | Safety, security and lessons learned from Astroworld festival

4:45 AM: Today is the day! The Final Four Fan Fest is set to start at the George R. Brown Convention Center downtown. KHOU 11 is the only station inside of the GRB and will be broadcasting from there all weekend.

MORE COVERAGE: 2023 Final Four in Houston

PLAYLIST: Final Four coverage

March Madness Music Festival lineup

Houston native Megan Thee Stallion is set to headline the first day of the March Madness Music Festival at Discovery Green downtown tonight. 

The three-day music festival is free, but you need to go online to get a ticket in advance. You'll need a government-issued ID at the gate that matches the name on the ticket and they're not transferable.

However, if you don't already have a ticket, you may be out of luck. Registration has already closed for tonight's performance.

The concerts are outdoors at Discovery Green, which is right across from the George R. Brown Convention Center in downtown Houston. It's going to be hot and humid so wear cool clothes and comfy shoes. Don't forget to check out our latest Houston forecast.

Friday, March 31

  • Tickets for Friday's AT&T Block Party featuring Houston native Megan Thee Stallion are already gone.

Saturday, April 1

  • Maggie Rogers
  • Lil Nas X

Sunday, April 2

  • Tim McGraw
  • Keith Urban
  • Little Big Town
  • Mickey Guyton

MORE: Hours, transportation options, where to park, FAQs

March Madness Music Festival bag policy: What's not allowed inside

Fan Fest

You don't have to be a basketball fan to have a blast at Fan Fest downtown at the George R. Brown Convention Center.

The family-friendly event will include interactive games, celebs, athletes, and autographs. We're the only TV station broadcasting live inside the GRB so be sure you stop by and say howdy!

Tickets are $8 in advance or $10 at the door. Kids 12 and younger get in free. Fans with tickets to Final Four or the Astros and Rockets games this weekend also get in free.

MORE: Ticket info, hours, parking

DAILY SCHEDULE: Plan your day at Fan Fest

Other Final Four activities downtown

You can register for Final Four events here

Tip-off Tailgate at NRG Park

Downtown isn't the only spot for Final Four festivities! There are two free events at NRG Park Friday, including the Tip-off Tailgate party from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. 

They're enjoying live music, games, team pep rallies and more. You can even shoot a basketball through a cannon!

 Stop by “The BEEF," a 30-foot space shuttle-themed food truck, for a free Wendy's hamburger, BBQ-seasoned french fries and an Interstellar Strawberry Frosty treat.  

Hundreds of fans were already lined up when the gates opened Friday morning.

Tip-off Tailgates only for fans with Final Four game tickets will also be held before the semifinal game Saturday and the national championship game Monday.

WHEN: Friday, March 31, Saturday, April 1, Monday, April 3

HOURS (subject to change):

Friday - 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Saturday - 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Monday - 4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

WHERE: NRG Park - Blue Lot

Reese's Final Four Friday

The public is also invited to NRG Stadium Friday to watch the Final Four teams practice. 

The free event also features the Reese's NABC All-Star Game, featuring top senior student-athletes from all over the country.


  • 10 a.m. Gates Open
  • 11 a.m. - 11:50 a.m. Florida Atlantic Team open practice
  • Noon - 12:50 p.m. San Diego St. team open practice
  • 1 p.m. - 1:50 p.m. Miami team open practice
  • 2 p.m. - 2:50 p.m.UConn team open practice
  • 3:30 p.m. Reese's NABC All-Star Game

Downtown transportation

Parking and traffic in downtown Houston can be rough on a regular day. Add the Final Four events plus Astros and Rockets games and you're best bet is to leave the driving to someone else.

  • If you’re going to the Final Four festivities, you can ride the METRORail for FREE from Friday, March 31 through Monday, April 3. The free rides are on the red, green and purple rail lines. You can plan your route here on the RideMetro app.
  • Rideshare apps and taxis are another option but be prepared for surge pricing and long waits. Rideshare and taxi locations:
Credit: City of Houston

Downtown parking

There is plenty of parking in downtown Houston, but there will also be a bunch of people, so plan ahead.

One of your best options is to park on the north side of downtown in the Theater District or University of Houston-Downtown, then jump on the METRORail.

You can also use one of several parking apps like DowntownHouston.org. Just click on the garage or lot icon of your choice. Some apps will allow you to reserve a space now for the Final Four weekend. Some will even show you how many spaces are available.

Here are some downtown parking hacks!

Final Four open practices at NRG Stadium

The four teams competing in the Men's Final Four will take part in open practices at NRG Stadium today. The practices are free to the public and provide fans who may not be able to attend the games an opportunity to see the court.

Schedule for Reese's Final Four Friday schedule:

  • 10 a.m. Doors open
  • 11 a.m. Florida Atlantic Owls practice
  • Noon San Diego State Aztecs practice
  • 1 p.m. Miami Hurricanes practice
  • 2 p.m. UConn Huskies practice

Before You Leave, Check This Out