Recently, we learned that Super Bowl LVIII will take place in Las Vegas, Nevada. Before that, the NFL hoped to hold 2024’s Big Game in New Orleans. However, NOLA declined the offer to host the game. The city has a long-standing commitment that it just can’t break, even if it is for one of the biggest sports events of the year.
NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport took to Twitter to report that New Orleans would not host Super Bowl LVIII. “New Orleans was initially supposed to host, but a scheduling conflict necessitated an audible.”
If it were any other city in the country, this wouldn’t make much sense. What could be bigger than hosting the Super Bowl? People travel from all around the nation to see the Big Game. Those people stay in hotels, shop at stores, and eat at local restaurants. The economic boom from hosting the NFL’s biggest game is huge.
According to BroBible, cities usually pull in roughly half a billion dollars when they host a Super Bowl. So, many would think that would be hard to pass up. That is until you realize that it’s New Orleans and in 2024 the Big Game will take place on February 11th.
Long-Standing Plans Prevent NOLA from Hosting Super Bowl LVIII
New Orleans hosts Mardi Gras every year. The city-wide celebration runs for the two weeks leading up to Fat Tuesday. Traditionally, the party allows everyone to sew their wild oats before Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent. To say it’s a big deal would be an understatement. After all, most people associate NOLA with Mardi Gras, voodoo, and jazz. Super Bowl LVIII will take place on the Sunday before Fat Tuesday, the final day of the celebration.
As a result, the city will already be packed with tourists and partiers. Restaurants, bars, hotels, and shops will be full to the brim. Those tourists and celebrators will also spill into the streets of the Big Easy on the biggest weekend of Mardi Gras. However, the crowd is only part of the reason NOLA said “No thanks” to the NFL. The Super Bowl doesn’t make as much money as Mardi Gras.
The Super Bowl brings cities nearly half a billion dollars every year. However, Mardi Gras usually doubles that.
However, it most likely goes deeper than that. There are hundreds if not thousands of people who see Mardi Gras as a time to forget about their normal inhibitions and participate in some drunken debauchery. But, at its heart, Mardi Gras is a spiritual celebration. More than that, it is deeply embedded in the history and culture of the city. You can’t put a price tag on tradition like that.