MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO/AP) — Minneapolis and the state of Minnesota hit the jackpot on Tuesday. The Super Bowl is coming to town in four years.
“I think this is a great opportunity for us to showcase how fabulous the city is to a nationwide and a worldwide audience,” said Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges.
The committee pitching Minnesota as the site of Super Bowl LII erupted in cheers when the announcement was made during the afternoon.
The Department of Employment and Economic Development estimates that the 100,000 people who visit Minnesota for the Super Bowl will leave behind $324 million.
“It’ll just make it that much more of a reality and a possibility that this will be a premiere destination for people around the country to come to,” said Vikings President Mark Wilf.
Richard Davis, of the bid committee, says the work to prep for the Super Bowl begins immediately.
“We have 3-and-a-half years, we are going to act like we have to be ready tomorrow,” he said. “We are going to start working on that day one, starting tomorrow morning.”
Minneapolis was largely considered an underdog behind Indianapolis and New Orleans, because of our cold climate.
But the delegation played a video for NFL owners that featured pitches from Lindsey Vonn, Adrian Peterson and Bud Grant. And NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said the new $1 billion Vikings stadium was a major selling point.
“We recognize that we will be playing in a cold weather city, but we also recognize that we are going to be playing in a city that’s going to be taking advantage of that,” Goodell said.
There are already plans for a Super Bowl Boulevard.
It’ll be more than a mile long in the heart of the city and will feature an ice skating rink, a snowboard halfpipe, a snowmobile track, and even curling and broomball.
“Clearly there is going to be a lot of work moving forward to make sure we as a city are ready to host this really big, really high-profile event,” Hodges said. “But I’m also completely confident we will be able to do that without a problem.”
City leaders also said this summer’s All-Star game at Target Field will be a good dry run to see how Minneapolis handles a big event.
Hodges said much of the costs involved for preparing the city for the Super Bowl will come from fundraising organized by the host committee. Gov. Mark Dayton will also hold a press conference on Wednesday to discuss further details.
As far as getting 2018 Super Bowl tickets? Vikings season ticket holders can enter a Super Bowl lottery in hopes of having their names drawn.