As a die-hard Giants fan, I was overjoyed on January 22nd, 2011 when the Giants beat the 49ers and it was confirmed that the 9-7 Giants would be playing in Super Bowl XLVI. The team’s hard work, predominantly towards the end of the season, had paid off and their efforts, once again, landed them in the championships. This year’s game was the much anticipated rematch of the 2008 Super Bowl between the New York Giants vs. New England Patriots; Tom Brady was coming back for revenge.
All season long I had been joking with my Dad that if the Giants make it to Indy, we would have to go. Luckily, he made good on his promise and off to Indy we went. Eli would play in the “House His Brother (Peyton Manning) Built,” and as a direct result almost everyone in Indy was rooting for the Giants. Walking around Super Bowl Village everyone was wearing Giants fan gear. You felt it the air that this was the Giant’s game for the taking … and take it they did!
Super Bowl Sunday really seemed to go off without a hitch in Indianapolis. The weather was perfect for February, 50 degrees and sunny. The host city’s planning was well-executed. Most importantly, the spirit of the city captivated visitors. New York certainly has a lot to live up to in 2014, when they have the chance to host Super Bowl XLVIII at Met Life Stadium.
I was particularly impressed with every single event staff person I interacted with in Indy. With the amount of typical fast-paced New Yorkers and New Englanders that made it out to the game, never once did the staffers seem stressed, overwhelmed or annoyed; a welcome change from my past experience most event staffers, especially in New York. Not only did they end every conversation with (and not sarcastically) “Have a Super Day,” but they all were so grateful and excited for the Super Bowl to be at Lucas Oil Stadium. It was their job to ensure that your stay and experience at Super Bowl XLVI was a positive one.
As a Giants fan, in a different city/state I felt very welcomed in Indy. At one point I even telling a member of the event staff how nervous I was for the game to begin. Rather than dismissing or ignoring me, as I would expect, she responded, with a huge smile on her face, “Don’t be, you have all Colt’s fans behind you and we are super excited for Eli to kick Tom’s butt…Let’s Go Giants!”
The Super Bowl staff in Indianapolis really was not your typical event staff; they truly made the day’s events successful. All day Sunday, you really felt that there were an army of people happily gave their time and effort to help stage this week’s events, and to make sure things went well. The Hoosiers really demonstrated that although in a smaller city, they really could play in the “Big Leagues.”