Inside dinning back in the day at Habana Cuba Restaurant in downtown San Jose as all dining now is outdoor. Habana says they plan to prepare food during Super Bowl LV for pick up (998cuba.com photo)
Are Super Bowl Parties Super Spreaders?
That’s Amaury News and Commentary
By Amaury Pi-González
One of the biggest days to party is coming next week, when Superbowl LV will take place in Tampa between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Kansas City Chiefs. And millions of Americans will party at home with family and friends as well as many others who usually go out to sports-bars, restaurants and places where sometimes the game is secondary to the festivities.
Millions of people gather and party together during the holidays, like Christmas, Thanksgiving, New Year, Fourth of July and other festive days. In sports, the Superbowl is one of those days where millions of people gather to celebrate, millions (not all necessarily football fans) celebrate Superbowl at home or on the road.
During regular times, regular bars. Sports bars and restaurants usually have a “very good day” when it comes to Superbowl Sunday. Although is not a Federal Holiday, it might as well be because of the popularity on this one day, which always takes place on a Sunday, the one day of the week where most people do not work.
Nevertheless, restaurants expect good business this next Superbowl Sunday. Here in the Bay Area restaurants were recently allowed to open outdoor dining areas. The hospitality business has been hit as hard as any other business. It has been suggested that the day after the Superbowl should be a Federal Holiday, since the attendance to work is as bad as any day of the year.
In pre-covid years, hundreds of thousands of people traveled to Las Vegas each year for-Superbowl weekend, always a huge event in Sin City. Obviously this year is different, still airlines are offering very tempting low prices as well as the Casinos with special and seductive packages for accommodations.
The 2019 Super Bowl brought roughly 310,000 visitors to Las Vegas and had an estimated economic impact of $425 million; according to research company Applied Analysis.
According to protocols in Nevada, casino operators are prohibited from hosting big crowds this year. Hotel estimates people gatherings a lot of 50-person events in ballrooms, much smaller events than in the past.
If they fail to comply they can be fined or have their licenses suspended or revoked. But Las Vegas is open for business and it will be interesting to see the numbers this coming Superbowl weekend.
Restaurants in the Bay Area are now open for outside dinning as take-out continues. Jennifer Echeverri, owner of Habana Cuba Restaurant on SoFA Market 387 South First Street in San José told me: “things are starting to pick up” and added “we are going to have a Superbowl special”. Like most places they have been just doing take-out, and will continue, and too many restaurants take-out has been the only lifeline and what has kept them in business.
Whatever you do this Super Sunday February 7, remember to keep doing what you have been doing taking all regular common sense precautions, like wearing masks (double-up if you want) separation, washing hands, etc.
Getting vaccinated has not been easy in California, there still a lot of confusion, people over 65 waiting to get their shots, others are awaiting the call from their medical providers and things are moving slowly. I was lucky to get my first Moderna shot and scheduled for my second one in mid-February. Enjoy the Superbowl, preferable with your immediate family. Have a good time. And remember Superbowl parties do not have to be Super Spreaders.
Stay well and stay tuned.
Amaury Pi Gonzalez is the lead play by play announcer for Oakland A’s Spanish radio on 1010 Le Grande KIQI San Francisco and does News and Commentary at http://www.sportsradioservice.com