ATLANTA, March 30, 2015 – This week the 2015 NCAA Men's Final Four returns to Indianapolis — a hotbed for hoops hysteria — and The Coca‑Cola Company has once again planned a series of larger-than-life experiences for passionate basketball fans of all ages. Through sports, music and entertainment, one of the NCAA's longest-standing Corporate Champions will keep fans invigorated throughout the weekend leading up to college basketball's biggest game.
“Each Final Four, Coca‑Cola aims to make the experience even more memorable for fans who join us in celebrating the joy of college athletics,” said Ivan Pollard, Senior Vice President, Connections, Coca‑Cola North America. “With a slate of activities offering something for everyone, we look forward to keeping fans refreshed throughout the weekend.”
In the weeks leading up to the tournament, Coke Zero is encouraging college basketball fans to embrace rivalries by being “Open To Try” being Frenemies. Through social media and original content, the Frenemies campaign offers a playful look at the irresistible joy of defeating your biggest rival, but celebrates the unique way rivalries bring fans together. This is the social companion to the brand’s larger “You Don’t Know Zero ‘Till You’ve Tried It” campaign which will come to life in Indianapolis through a variety of out-of-home, digital, social and on-site activations. For more information, check out @CokeZero and the #OpenToTry hashtag on Twitter.
In the host city of Indianapolis, the Company also will offer a variety of fan-friendly experiences:
- Coca‑Cola NCAA® Youth Clinics (April 4) – The NCAA Youth Clinics are a community outreach program that connects area youth with selected college championships. On Saturday, April 4, youth in grades 3-8 and their families will receive basketball clinic instruction from NCAA coaches and student-athletes while also getting tips on how to live active and healthy lifestyles. During the clinics, parents have the opportunity to participate in an educational session on collegiate athletic recruitment and eligibility, the importance of physical fitness and sports injury prevention. The youth clinics will take place at multiple locations, including Pike High School, Lawrence North High School and Indy South Sports Academy. Check-in for each event begins at 8:30 a.m. and runs from 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. All clinics are free, but require pre-registration at http://www.ncaa.com/final-four/coke-youth-clinics.
- The Coke Zero™ Countdown Concert (April 4) – As part of 2015 NCAA March Madness Music FestivalTM produced by NCAA and Turner Live Events, The Coke Zero Countdown Concert will feature a multi-platinum artist in between the semi-final games. Critically acclaimed bands Passion Pit and Bleachers will also perform Saturday. Performances will take place at White River State Park on Saturday, April 4 from noon to 9:30 p.m. The Coke Zero Countdown Concert is a non-ticketed event open to the public on a first-come basis. The concert will be live streamed at www.ncaa.com/musicfest.com.
- NCAA Final Four Dribble Refreshed by Coca‑Cola (April 6) – Encouraging fun, healthy, active living for Indianapolis’ youth, up to 3,200 youth and their families will join the NCAA and Coca‑Cola for the Final Four Dribble. Participants will parade through the heart of downtown Indianapolis, led by NBA legend David Robinson. Registration kicks off on Sunday, April 5, at 12:30 p.m. The walk begins at 2 p.m., starting from South Capitol Avenue (between West Georgia Street and Maryland Street) and finishing at Lucas Oil Stadium at 2:30 p.m. Participating youth will receive a T-shirt, basketball and free entry into Final Four Fan Fest™ presented by Capital One®. The event is free, but requires pre-registration at http://www.ncaa.com/final-four/final-four-dribble.
- Final Four Fan Fest presented by Capital One® (April 3-6) – Final Four Fan Fest fills the Indiana Convention Center with the ultimate pregame destination. Coca‑Cola’s footprint will feature appearances by legendary coaches and former student-athletes, as well as opportunities to refresh your taste buds with samples of Coca‑Cola products. Tickets are on sale at the door and range from $5 (kids 3-11) to $10 (adults 12+).
- The POWERADE Combine (April 5) – Fans can put their basketball abilities to the test at the POWERADE Court within Final Four Fan Fest. The POWERADE Combine will challenge athletes at several timed stations, testing their speed, agility and shooting for the chance to win POWERADE prizes. For more information, please visit http://www.ncaa.com/final-four.
More information on activities planned by the NCAA and The Coca Cola Company during the NCAA Men’s Final Four can be found at www.ncaa.com/final-four.
The NCAA is a membership-led nonprofit association of colleges and universities committed to supporting academic and athletic opportunities for more than 460,000 student-athletes at more than 1,000 member colleges and universities. Each year, more than 54,000 student-athletes compete in NCAA championships in Divisions I, II and III sports. Visit www.ncaa.org and www.ncaa.com for more details about the Association, its goals and members and corporate partnerships that help support programs for student-athletes. The NCAA is proud to have the following elite companies as official Corporate Champions—AT&T, Capital One and Coca‑Cola—and the following elite companies as official Corporate Partners—Allstate, Amazon (Kindle), Bing (Microsoft), Buffalo Wild Wings, Buick, Burger King, Enterprise, Infiniti, LG, Lowe’s, Nabisco, Northwestern Mutual, Reese’s (Hershey’s), Unilever and UPS.
NCAA, Final Four, March Madness and March Madness Music Festival are trademarks of the National Collegiate Athletic Association.
The Coca‑Cola Company (NYSE: KO) is the world's largest beverage company, refreshing consumers with more than 500 sparkling and still brands. Led by Coca‑Cola, one of the world's most valuable and recognizable brands, our Company's portfolio features 20 billion-dollar brands including, Diet Coke, Fanta, Sprite, Coca‑Cola Zero, vitaminwater, POWERADE, Minute Maid, Simply, Georgia, Dasani, FUZE TEA and Del Valle. Globally, we are the No. 1 provider of sparkling beverages, ready-to-drink coffees, and juices and juice drinks. Through the world's largest beverage distribution system, consumers in more than 200 countries enjoy our beverages at a rate of 1.9 billion servings a day. With an enduring commitment to building sustainable communities, our Company is focused on initiatives that reduce our environmental footprint, support active, healthy living, create a safe, inclusive work environment for our associates, and enhance the economic development of the communities where we operate. Together with our bottling partners, we rank among the world's top 10 private employers with more than 700,000 system associates. For more information, visit www.coca-colacompany.com, follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/CocaColaCo or find us on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/the-coca-cola-company.