Minnesota had to give NFL a lot of free stuff to win Super Bowl bid


Bringing the Super Bowl to Minnesota in 2018 was no small accomplishment for the Super Bowl Bid Committee representing Minneapolis and the Vikings.

Minnesota's winning bid was better than those from New Orleans and Indianapolis, the other two finalists to host Super Bowl 52. But getting the nod over two cities that have excelled at hosting past Super Bowls required a lot.

The Star Tribune obtained a copy of the NFL's 153-page checklist of requirements host cities need to meet in order to win the bid.

Among the requirements are 35,000 free parking spaces, access to "top quality" golf courses, free police escorts for NFL owners and free presidential suites at top hotels.

Per the report, Minneapolis and the Vikings agreed to the majority of the NFL's demands.

Deadspin dug into the report and found the following requirements are asked of host cities.

-At least 20 billboards in the Twin Cities to advertise the Super Bowl

-Four "top quality" golf courses and two "top quality" bowling lanes

-Local police officers to crack down on counterfeit tickets and merchandise

-Portable cellular towers at team hotels, if cellphone signal strength isn't acceptable

-At least 20 color pages of advertising in daily newspapers

-Four weeks of advertising on at least six radio stations

-ATMs inside the stadium that take NFL-preferred credit and debit cards, and the removal of ATMs which don't

The long list of demands make for an extremely expensive bill for the city to foot. According to the Star Tribune report, $30 million in private pledges were raised to help offset the cost to the public.

In a statement, the bid committee said they did not agree to all of the NFL's Super Bowl bid specifications, but that the bid remains private.

Super Bowl organizers say all of the costs will be covered through the Host Committee's fundraising efforts and any additional costs will be paid for by the private sector.

Neither the city nor the state will be responsible for additional public costs such as increased security, public infrastructure or police.

The bottom line is that by hosting the world's marquee sporting event, we have guaranteed that 100,000+ visitors will descend on this community, resulting in hundreds of millions of dollars in economic activty and significant tax revenues to the state.

Yahoo Sports reports that the term "no cost to the NFL" appears a whopping 150 times in the report.

If that wasn't enough, 180 NFL employees are guaranteed a three-day trip to the Twin Cities to, in a way, scout the host city at least 16 months before the big game. The trip, if you were wondering, also is free.

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