Apparently the NFL has no fear of Covid-19.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, representatives from the league, the Los Angeles Tourism and Convention Board, the Los Angeles Sports & Entertainment Commission, the Los Angeles Rams, the Los Angeles Chargers, and SoFi Stadium held a panel Jan. 13 at the stadium to confirm that not only would Super Bowl LVI continue as planned, all the associated Super Bowl week events would still go on.
“Just to start and clarify, all of our plans for the Super Bowl and Super Bowl week remain fully in place for a month from today,” said Katie Keenan, senior director of event operations at National Football League.
Obviously, no one thought the Super Bowl was in danger of cancellation. An asteroid would have to strike for the NFL to cancel the big game, and the league would probably still try to have it with survivors playing.
However, the game is usually accompanied by a week of sponsored parties, fan events, concerts and red carpet galas.
With the current Omicron variant causing a surge in Covid-19 cases in Los Angeles County, there have been rumors and questions about whether the league would move the game from Inglewood, CA to AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TX.
An NFL spokesperson denied those rumors, claiming the league always has contingency plans in place.
Los Angeles County has some of the strictest Covid-19 mandates, with vaccination required for sporting events, large gatherings like concerts, movie theaters, nightclubs, bars and restaurants. All the places that would be involved in Super Bowl week activities.
It’s worth noting, Texas’ rules aren’t as strict.
So-Fi Stadium requires proof of vaccination, a negative Covid-19 test (within 24 hours for antigen test or 48 hours for PCR test) and photo ID for guests 18 and older for all events. Masks must be worn at all times, unless actively eating or drinking.
Look, we’re not trying to dampen anyone’s Super Bowl fun, but surely the league can celebrate its giant spectacle without 4000 parties jammed into one week?
Moral of the story, mask up California, as the influx of football fans will probably lead to a post-game surge.
For the rest of us unimportant people who don’t get invited to fancy parties, Super Bowl LVI airs Sunday, Feb. 13 on NBC.
Southern California legends Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg and Kendrick Lamar will be joined by Mary J. Blige and Eminem in the halftime show.