BY MIKE MCCARTNEY FOR THE HAWAII TOURISM AUTHORITY – As the most popular spectator sport in the U.S., the NFL Pro Bowl Week is one of the most anticipated sporting events in Hawai‘i, generating millions of dollars in visitor spending and attracting thousands of visitors to the Hawaiian Islands for the all-star game.
Therefore, the NFL’s recent decision to return the NFL Pro Bowl to Hawai‘i in 2014 is great news for our tourism economy. The Pro Bowl in Hawai‘i is more than just a game; it generates worldwide media exposure for the Hawaiian Islands, contributes significant tax revenue and expenditures through visitor spending, boosts activity and revenue for local businesses and offers an opportunity for residents to engage with players and experience a live professional football game. The NFL also gives back to our community through youth education programs, charitable contributions and events.
This past year, the HTA and NFL worked with the inaugural Pro Bowl Committee – prominent business and community leaders in Hawai‘i – to enhance the 2013 Pro Bowl Week through attendance building, media exposure, community experience, player/spouse/family experiences, military integration, business development and inbound packaging. These collective efforts also led to the development of new initiatives including the Eat the Street Pro Bowl Style and the Hawai‘i NFL Greats honoree program.
Following the 2013 Pro Bowl, the HTA maintained ongoing discussions with the NFL to remind them that Hawai‘i is the home of the Pro Bowl and that there is no better place to host the all-star game.
Leading up to next year’s Pro Bowl, the HTA will continue to work with the NFL to improve Pro Bowl Week experiences for residents and visitors, while expanding interest and exposure of the game to markets beyond North America, including Asia and Oceania.
We are grateful to the NFL for bringing the Pro Bowl back to Hawai‘i next year and we look forward to building upon our long-standing partnership well into the future.