INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — It’s a tale of two cities: Minneapolis, where excitement is overflowing for Super Bowl 52, and Indianapolis, where it’s just another Friday.
Indianapolis was one of three cities the NFL considered for this year’s big game before going with Minneapolis, home of the new US Bank Stadium.
Allison Melangton, president and CEO of the 2012 Super Bowl Host Committee, said with a smile that “watching the coverage does make your heart hurt a little bit.”
Melangton was a visionary behind Indy’s successful 2012 Super Bowl bid. She flew to Atlanta in 2014 to pitch Indy’s 2018 Super Bowl plan with Jim Irsay and Colts legend Jeff Saturday.
“We pulled all the great things that happened in 2012 into the pitch for 2018,” Melangton said. “We came up short. It’s always a risk when you are bidding against other great cities.”
It’s no easy process. Melangton said each finalist gets about 15 minutes to pitch a plan they’ve worked on for months.
Greg Basey owns Basey’s Grill and Spirits next to Lucas Oil Stadium. He said the big game in 2012 meant big business, but he doesn’t mind Indianapolis sitting this one out.
“I was hoping New Orleans or Minneapolis would get it,” Basey said. “It’s a lot of behind-the-scenes and a lot of red tape that went with hosting a Super Bowl that I really just don’t care to be a part of again.”
Basey said he expects Indianapolis to host again someday.
Melangton said it will take time–because the NFL doesn’t pick cold weather cities often–but Indy has what it takes.
“We will bid again if we feel like we can win. It’s a lot of time and energy if you don’t think you can win. We have to be really strategic in looking at the next 10 years and saying, ‘What’s our best opportunity?'”
Indianapolis is scheduled to host the NBA All-Star Game, the College Football Playoff National Championship and the Final Four all within a 12-month period in 2021 and 2022.
Melangton said Indianapolis probably would not be hosting all of those events so soon if the city had hosted this year’s Super Bowl.