Home » Destination Hawaii » Currently Reading:

Hawaii Tourism Authority wants long-term Pro Bowl contract with NFL

July 29, 2013 Destination Hawaii No Comments Email Email

The Hawaii Tourism Authority is looking to get into a long-term contract with the National Football League for the league’s annual all-star game, the Pro Bowl, according to David Uchiyama, the state agency’s vice president for brand management.

“They [the NFL] are looking to have some flexibility to take the game to the Mainland if they choose,” said Uchiyama, the state’s chief negotiator when it comes to the NFL Pro Bowl staying in Hawaii. “The relationship with the NFL has been very good, [but] they have been concerned with attendance and that’s why we have increased branding in Asian markets.”

Uchiyama, along with former NFL executive Frank Vuono and Olin Kreutz, a six-time Pro Bowl center for the Chicago Bears and St. Louis School alumnus, were panelists as part of a discussion regarding the Pro Bowl’s future in Honolulu at the Downtown Athletic Club Hawaii luncheon Tuesday at the Hukilau Honolulu restaurant.

Kreutz, who is now retired from the game, says that making the Pro Bowl was one of the biggest honors of his NFL career and being that he is from Hawaii, it is an extra special treat.

“The tradition is in Hawaii [and] it just feels like a celebration of your year,” he said. “Your family gets to come with you, it’s relaxed and makes you really feel like you accomplished this.”

But, despite most players wanting the game to stay in Hawaii, the NFL has issues with how soft the competition has turned out to be.

One of the strategies to liven up the game includes having captains of two teams draft players.

Vuono, who comes to Hawaii on a regular basis for the Pro Bowl and other matters, suggested bringing back other events to Hawaii, which would be held surrounding the game, such as the NFL’s fastest man competition, golf tournaments and some that involve retired players.

On average, the NFL Pro Bowl brings in $28 million in visitor spending and another $2.8 million in tax revenues for the state, according to Uchiyama, who says that 18,000 people come to Hawaii for the Pro Bowl each year.

The state puts up $4 million a year for the rights to host the contest, which is played a week before the Super Bowl.

The NFL said in March that the all-star game would be returning to Hawaii next year, but after 2014, it may go back to the Mainland.

“Hawaii sells itself and the players love being here,” said Kruetz.

Edited by : Bill Hurley

Comment on this Article:







Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.

Platinium Partnership

ADVERTISEMENTS

Elite Partnership Sponsors

ADVERTISEMENTS

Premier Partnership Sponsors

ADVERTISEMENTS

Official Media Event Partner

ADVERTISEMENTS

Global Travel media endorses the following travel publication

ADVERTISEMENTS

GLOBAL TRAVEL MEDIA VIDEOS