On the final day of Super Bowl Boulevard, a host of elected officials stopped by to enjoy the attractions and to tout the game’s economic impact, including one elected official with a very big cloud hanging over his administration. Bobby Cuza filed the following report.
This is what you might call a power formation. Mayor Bill de Blasio and family alongside Senator Charles Schumer and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. While son Dante broke free of the pack, the mayor was clearly enjoying the ride.
“We should just keep this, right? It’s pretty cool,” the mayor said.
Saturday, the first family and other elected officials mingled with the crowds on the last day of Super Bowl Boulevard, 13 blocks of mostly football-themed amusements along Broadway. And regardless of Sunday’s outcome, they said the region’s economy is the winner.
“It is beyond our expectations,” said Schumer.
“The economic revenue has been very positive for the city. Through the Super Bowl, we’re creating jobs,” said John Tisch, co-owner of the New York Giants.
According to Governor Andrew Cuomo, an estimated 1.5 million people visited Super Bowl Boulevard, with Super Bowl visitors generating up to $300 million in economic activity for the state, though some economists cast doubt on such figures. At a ceremony where hosting duties were handed off to Arizona, site of next year’s game, Cuomo thanked the NFL for bringing the game to a cold-weather city.
“The commissioner is a former New Yorker, from upstate New York and he knew that football is a game best played cold and that’s why he said, ‘Let’s go to New York and New Jersey’ and he was right,” said Cuomo.
Meanwhile, Governor Chris Christie, embroiled in scandal over the politically motivated creation of a traffic jam at the George Washington Bridge, looked unusually subdued. He received some boos from the crowd.
“You’ve already heard enough speeches,” Christie said. He kept his remarks to just 30 seconds.
“Clearly not eager to face the media, Governor Christie slipped off-stage after the news conference here without speaking to reporters, as did Governor Cuomo.
Cuomo has sought to steer clear of the Christie scandal. But his chumminess with de Blasio was again on display.
At one point, both men playfully jeered Arizona when an official announce it was 70 degrees and sunny in Phoenix.
The men looked very much like teammates as they booed together.