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15 posts from November 2010

11/30/2010

Volunteer to help set the stage for Black Eyed Peas at halftime of Super Bowl XLV

How would you like to be part of the National Football League's Bridgestone Super Bowl XLV Halftime Show starring The Black Eyed Peas? 

The league is looking for 600 North Texas volunteers to help run the stage on to the field and assist in other halftime related duties.

Volunteers must be at least 18 years old and no previous experience as a roadie is needed. Applicants must attend all rehearsals during Super Bowl week.

And even though they will be in Cowboys Stadium, volunteers do not get tickets for the game.

Joanna Hunter, an NFL spokesperson, said that TVs are situated in the compound where volunteers gather before halftime.

Hunter said that all applicants will undergo a background check.

She also said that the NFL may request volunteer lists from the North Texas Super Bowl Host Committee to help fill the 600 openings.

Volunteers will remain in the league's database, which means they would be eligible to help out at future Super Bowls around the country.

Anyone who is interested can register at www.superbowlproductions.com. The rehearsal schedule will also be posted enabling applicants to determine whether they can be available.

When you visit the website you will see that perhaps the worst kept secret of Super Bowl XLV has been confirmed and that the Peas will perform.

-- Pete Alfano

11/29/2010

Super Bowl Host Committee sells out of 300 tickets, cancels Thursday sale

The North Texas Super Bowl committee has sold out of the 300 tickets it intended to put up for sale to the public beginning Thursday, and it cancelled a Cowboys Stadium launch party.

Bill Lively, the Host Committee chief, said in an emailed memo that members of the volunteer Host Committee and its Action Teams and Councils purchased the 300 tickets.

The committee’s only remaining ticket inventory: Four suites starting at $199,850 apiece.

Info on the suites:  Contact the Host Committee’s partner, NFL On Location, at www.nflsuperbowlaccess.com or at 877-611-3947.

- Scott Nishimura

11/25/2010

It's official: Black Eyed Peas to headline Super Bowl halftime

Finally, it's official: The announcement comes via Fox, during the Cowboys-Saints game, that the Black Eyed Peas will be the halftime act during Super Bowl XLV next February.

Here's the word from the Peas' will.i.am, posted on Twitter:

"The black eyed peas are officially performing the superbowl halftime show in dallas...they just announced it on fox...happy thanks giving"

 

11/23/2010

NFL-approved Super Bowl stores begin popping up in North Texas

The first wave of what’s expected to be dozens of NFL official temporary standalone stores already has popped up in the region.

Sports Fan Marketing Inc., a Scottsdale, Ariz., marketer and one of six firms authorized by the NFL to erect temporary standalone shops for Super Bowl XLV, last Friday opened seven The Super Bowl Fan Stores in prominent North Texas malls, including four in Tarrant County. The owner, Steve Sodell, says he plans another 10-15 locations in hotel lobbies, fan venues, and other locations by the time the game hits Feb. 6.

His first seven stores include locations at Grapevine Mills Mall, The Parks at Arlington, and Hulen and Ridmgar malls.

"I am in the process of signing other deals," said Sodell, now in his ninth Super Bowl. "They will be very visible."

- Scott Nishimura

Video shows off Arlington's entertainment district traffic control

This is a nicely done video by the city of Arlington and the Arlington Police Department, which has turned traffic control into a science. I've been to all but one Cowboys home game this season and although I don't leave for home right after the final gun, I have had few problems on the roads.

-- Kathy Vetter

11/19/2010

Super Bowl Host Committee putting 300 game tickets, four suites, up for sale

It's the first time the Committee is making game tickets available individually, instead of through sponsorship packages. Click here for the full story at star-telegram.com.

- Scott Nishimura, Star-Telegram

11/18/2010

All that in the final two minutes? Behind the scenes at a Super Bowl

Although the games can sometimes be boring, the outcome of the Super Bowl is never certain. Exhibit A, the New Orleans Saints.

But everything else about the game is an incredibly choreographed production. In fact, the flurry of events taking place off the field during the final two minutes might even beat the pace on the field.

National Football League officials were in town Thursday to brief the media on photography rules and logistics for the Feb. 6 game at Cowboys Stadium, and they described what to expect around field level in those final minutes.

For one thing, dozens of writers who have covered the game from the main and auxiliary press boxes are escorted down to the post-game interview room.

Also, friends and families of the winning team gather near the field to get ready to join the post-game celebration.

The losing team, meanwhile, wants to hightail it home as quickly as possible, so buses pull up beneath the stadium and sit ready for boarding.

Finally, those who have bought the right packages for NFL On Location, the league’s hospitality division, are also down getting ready to head onto the field for their “post-game experience.”

The NFL has to play traffic cop to make sure all those events happen seamlessly, without creating a massive traffic jam at some field-level entrances and exits.

And that’s all just in the final two minutes of a weeklong series of events.

Maybe that “Super” tag is justified after all.

-- Kathy Vetter

Volunteers prepare for Super Bowl XLV

DALLAS - Smiling, attentive and ready to answer questions.

That could be the credo for the 10,000 or so volunteers who’ll be giving face time before, during, and after Super Bowl XLV.

On Wednesday, I attended a lively, volunteer training session at DFW/International Airport for Super Bowl volunteers who are tasked with greeting people at the airport. Basically, that entails being nice to travelers, answering questions, and handing out maps and a Super Bowl XLV Visitor’s Guide.

The idea is to make sure visitors have a fun, hassle-free time while they are here.

We want them to say things like "People in North Texas are so friendly" or "That was the best Super Bowl ever.

We want them to leave wanting to come back.  Melody

We also got the first glimpse at the official uniform for Super Bowl volunteers: Blue collared shirt, jacket and hat (all with the Super Bowl XLV logo, which we get to keep) and kaki pants.

Over the next few months, training sessions are being held for volunteers who will greet people at hotels and the airport, work at the NFL Experience, help out in the Super Bowl’s administrative offices, and or assist with transportation.

By February, the volunteers will have their game face on.

My face will be among them.

- Melody McDonald (That's me, at right.)

Here's a little video I shot at the event.

Black Eyed Peas to play Super Bowl halftime? Really? Didn't know that

It has probably been the worst-kept secret about Super Bowl XLV, but The Black Eyed Peas rumors are back thanks to a comment by an NFL official Thursday morning.

As reported nearly everywhere, Fergie and the Peas are expected to headline the halftime show at the Feb. 6 game at Cowboys Stadium.

No official announcement has come from the league, but the news usually comes around Thanksgiving, so we should hear at any time.

NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy declined again Thursday to officially confirm the news. The Dallas Morning News reported that it had gotten confirmation, citing only "a source."

At a Super Bowl photo briefing Thursday at Cowboys Stadium, a league credentialing official joked about the Peas.

As he described all the traffic expected around the field at haltime, the official mentioned all the children who usually participate in the extravaganzas. Organizers call them "snowflakes," he said.

But this year, he said, they are referred to as "Peapods."

Get it?

-- Kathy Vetter

11/16/2010

Arlington says streets near stadium will close several days before Super Bowl

ARLINGTON -- With less than three months until Super Bowl Sunday, Arlington is busy preparing for the influx of visitors as well as for those looking to cash in on them.

On Tuesday, the City Council approved hiring contractors to help the city inspect planned layout changes at Cowboys Stadium, which will add seating for the Feb. 6 game.

The council also approved rules that will regulate advertisers, businesses and protesters wanting to take advantage of the national media attention the Super Bowl will bring to Cowboys Stadium.

Some of the preparations will help the city fulfill Super Bowl bid obligations, such as assuring the National Football League that corporate sponsors will be protected from competitive advertisers trying to fraudulently associate themselves with the game.

The council approved creating a “clean zone” in a one-mile radius around Cowboys Stadium that would ban temporary signs, projected image signs, inflatables and other marketing activities starting Jan. 23, if they have no official ties to the game.

The rules are also designed to help prevent the sale of counterfeit or unlicensed merchandise. Similar rules restricted advertising near the stadium during the NBA All-Star Game last February.

Streets near stadium to close early

Parking and transportation plans are also under way. Last week, North Texas Super Bowl Host Committee representatives asked Arlington to consider banning pedicabs during the game because of traffic and pedestrian safety concerns.

Deputy City Manager Trey Yelverton presented the request to the City Council on Tuesday and, although no official action was taken, several council members indicated that they would support a temporary ban.

"I don’t think you can mix buses and cars and emergency vehicles with pedicabs.We have enough trouble on regular game days,” Arlington Mayor Robert Cluck said.

Yelverton said an agreement has been reached with Six Flags Over Texas and Hurricane Harbor to provide additional parking for the game.

At least 25,000 spaces are expected to be available between Cowboys Stadium, Rangers Ballpark in Arlington and the theme parks, in addition to 30,000 spaces available at city-permitted entrepreneurial parking lots, he said.

A few thousand parking spaces closest to the stadium will be blocked off as part of the NFL's safety perimeter, and to make room for TV trucks, the big tailgate party and VIP tents.

The city is also working to prepare Arlington motorists for lane reductions and road closures around the stadium beginning in late January.

Two weeks before the game, Cowboys Way and Legends Way will be closed completely while a secure perimeter is constructed around the stadium, public works assistant director Keith Melton said.

Starting Jan. 28, Randol Mill Road and Collins Street around the stadium will be reduced to one lane in each direction.

On Super Bowl Sunday, Collins Street will be open to southbound traffic only, Melton said.

Rules for protesters

City officials are also expecting more people to seek permits to hold protests at the stadium, which is a city-owned facility, during the high-profile event.

The council approved establishing a formal process where applicants, if they indicate their event is protected by the First Amendment, can request an expedited permit application review to cut down the waiting time from weeks to days.

City ordinances will be updated with clear standards under which Arlington can deny an application and establish a formal appeals process.

Stadium modifications

On Tuesday, the council approved a $100,000 contract with Bureau Veritas North America, Inc. to assist with plan reviews and inspections at Cowboys Stadium and to handle routine building permit issues citywide during Super Bowl week.

The funding will come from the state’s Major Events Trust Fund.

Arlington previously contracted with the firm to help review construction of the $1.2 billion stadium, which is partially taxpayer-funded

About $5 million is being spent to make changes in the stadium, including $2.7 million for temporary seating, according to the Super Bowl Host Committee. The NFL is estimating capacity of about 93,200 for the game.

The league is expected to release more details about the planned stadium configuration and anticipated seating capacity on Dec. 7, Arlington Fire Chief Don Crowson said Tuesday.

“It is not clear whether standing-room-only tickets will be an aspect of the Super Bowl,” Crowson said. “The capacity issues are still being discussed.”

Arlington has typically allowed a maximum of 14,400 standing-room tickets for the six party decks at other stadium events, although nearly 30,000 such “Party Passes” were sold during the first regular season Dallas Cowboys game in September 2009.

The stadium’s maximum occupancy is about 111,000, but that includes maintenance areas and other areas with no view of the field.

-- Susan Schrock and Pete Alfano