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Super Bowl XLVI: Party Rockin'

Alix Fitch |
February 7, 2012 | 3:12 p.m. PST

Staff Writer


Host city Indianapolis pulled out all the stops to impress fans. (Alix Fitch/Neon Tommy)
Host city Indianapolis pulled out all the stops to impress fans. (Alix Fitch/Neon Tommy)
This year’s Super Bowl was without a doubt one of the most inviting and well thought out spectacles in the NFL’s existence. With festivities beginning on January 30 and continuing well into the early hours of Monday morning, an estimated crowd of more than 100,000 people showed up to Indianapolis’ doorstep.  

The atmosphere was one unlike anything that I had ever experienced before.  

Fans from all points of the globe gathered in the streets of downtown Indy to try out everything from the local eateries to the “NFL Experience” activities. Even if you weren’t a declared Giants or Patriots fan, there was plenty of hospitality to go around for the masses. As individuals displayed their loyalty to their respective teams, especially the Colts, no team was left out of the spectacle.

It seemed as though the entire state of Indiana was in attendance at Super Bowl Village, many explaining, “This is a chance unlike any other. We all want to take advantage of the opportunity.”  With Super Bowl XLVI merchandise the hottest item on the market, the similarity of colors between the Patriots and the Giants created much confusion. However, this didn’t stop the array of people from displaying the most eclectic show of team spirit ever to hit downtown Indianapolis. It didn’t simply stop at hats and jerseys; groups painted their bodies, created custom signs with flashing additions, and even made themselves into human autographs.

Fans from all over the country crowded the streets day and night. (Alix Fitch/Neon Tommy)
Fans from all over the country crowded the streets day and night. (Alix Fitch/Neon Tommy)

All of these things and more were prominently displayed in the chilly temperatures of a typical Indiana February. The Colts fan base was in full force as visitors from all over the state came out to experience the atmosphere, whether they had a ticket or not. Localshops and pubs extended their hours in order to accommodate the array of sports fans, and the city itself made some alterations to the streets of downtown. Heat lamps and portable facilities were strategically scattered in popular places such as “The Fan Zone,” where there was sure to be bumper-to-bumper traffic throughout. Streets were blocked off for the masses and security was at an all time high, regulating the flow of the coherent and not-so coherent individuals roaming the city. Music was a continuous feature throughout the week, keeping the mood lively well into the night. Performances by featured artists such as The Fray, LMFAO and many others were just some of the activites leading up to the main event. 

With the Super Bowl being held during the first weekend of February each year, cities have been challenged to maintain ideal weather conditions for the game and its festivities.

Throughout the entire week, it was cold and rainy with the highs reaching 35 degrees and lows dropping to as low as 20 degrees. This posed as no challenge for most folks, as there was always a crowd of people throughout the streets of downtown and the

The post-game celebration was only half the party. (Alix Fitch/Neon Tommy)
The post-game celebration was only half the party. (Alix Fitch/Neon Tommy)
indoor facilities. For those who chose not to head into the bars during unexpected bouts of wind and rain, there were heat panels that were built to provide a comfortable environment while watching the surrounding events. 

Indianapolis did an amazing job maintaining the upbeat atmosphere by setting up televisions and banners that constantly updated the fans on upcoming events, with maps of their location. There seemed to be something for everyone, as the list of activities ranged from curling, to zip lining right through the heart of Indianapolis.

Despite the sky-high price of tickets to the big game, the fans took advantage of everything that the city of Indianapolis had to offer. Each hotel was filled to the brim with occupants from regions all across the country. Media filled the sidewalks, and celebrities like Cam Newton and Alec Baldwin went around enjoying the festivities themselves. The overall atmosphere of the Super Bowl was something one could be enjoyed by anyone, no matter their age.  

I'll always remember it as one week in February, one City, one huge celebration. 


Reach Alix by email, or follow her on Twitter.



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