NEW YORK (AP) — The NFL is doing its best to get New Yorkers pumped up about hosting the Super Bowl for the first time, though it is sure to cause some major traffic jams.
The city is blocking off a 13-block stretch of Broadway for four days, beginning at noon Wednesday, for a series of fan-related events around Times Square. There will be 60-foot-long toboggan ride, autograph sessions with NFL players, a 10-minute film showing on the facade of Macy's, a spot to get pictures with the Vince Lombardi Trophy, and nightly concerts culminating with a show by Blondie on Saturday.
Taking things a bit further, the famous thoroughfare has been temporarily renamed Super Bowl Boulevard between 34th and 47th streets.
Even with all the hoopla over Sunday's title game between the Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks, which also includes the Empire State Building being lit up in both team's colors, there's still a sense that many folks in the Big Apple aren't all that impressed. They're going about their business as though this week is no different than any other — the down side to holding the Super Bowl in a city with so many other things to do.
It remains to be seen if Super Bowl Boulevard will ramp up the excitement.
ACROSS THE RIVER: Of course, the big game is actually being held in an entirely different state — across the river in New Jersey at MetLife Stadium.
Not surprisingly, Gov. Chris Christie and other state officials have gone out of their way to stress that New Jersey is playing a key role in hosting the first outdoor Super Bowl in a cold-weather city.
That included media day on Tuesday, which was held indoors at Prudential Arena in downtown Newark. Yellow-coated volunteers made sure fans and media knew where they weren't in New York anymore, shouting "Welcome to New Jersey!" to everyone entering the home of the NHL's New Jersey Devils.
The Rutgers pep band was brought in to entertain the crowd, blasting out a rousing rendition for Journey's "Separate Ways" before the Seahawks began their hour-long session with the media.
The police even got in on the revelry. Despite frigid temperatures, two officers tossed a football instead of directing traffic. Inside, the snappily dressed state police force posed for pictures with players and cheerleaders.
SHINY BRONCO: No one was glittering on media day more than Denver's Malik Jackson.