Welcome to San Diego Blog | October 13, 2011
San Diego Chargers Football
Downtown Rocks Chargers Football
The change of seasons in Downtown San Diego was more radical than I’ve ever seen it. The transition from summer to fall didn’t feature leaves changing colors or frost warnings, like I remember from days back in Michigan.
The season change in Downtown San Diego is from the lethargic response to the end of the Padres season to the over the top fanatacism of the Charger’s faithful. Every Sunday, in every store, on every street corner and most of all in every restaurant and tavern, Philip Rivers and Antonio Gates jerseys are proudly worn.
The buzz begins over coffee in the morning. With the Chargers winning 4 out of their first 5, there ‘s reason to be excited. And the best part of the schedule is still to come–with the Jets and Packers on the schedule in the next three weeks and two games against the arch-rival Raiders still to come.
Chargers Games Downtown
It’s game time! From East Village to Little Italy, The Gaslamp and The Marina District hotels, how many flat screen TVs do you think there are in Downtown? Recent experience tells me that regardless of how many barstools there are, it’s standing room only throughout most of Downtown.
Do you have any favorites. Among my friends, the recent opening of two East Village establishments have given us new choices for our football viewing. Check out Bub’s at the Ballpark and Bootlegger, two great places to watch football on Sunday afternoon (or Saturday if you have time for college games).
There are some great similarities between these two recent additions to the Downtown Restaurant scene. Both occupy busy corners in old East Village buildings. The design concept was integrating indoor space and outdoors by installing room sized garage doors that open to create seamless spaces.
There’s an abundance of local craft beers available in both restaurants. Food at Bub’s (aka Bub’s Dive Bar in Pacific Beach) is decidedly downscale. Baskets of peanuts on every table–throw the shells on the floor, and their world famous Tater Tots, accompany some pretty good burgers, sandwiches and salads. Actually, not sure Tots go with salads!
Bootleggers on the other hand is more Gastropub than dive bar. Bootleggers serves Pomme Frites (in a wild mushroom gravy) and Halibut fish sticks. And it’s all delicious.
The Chargers Future in San Diego
OK, no question mark. The Chargers future in San Diego is dependent on construction of a Downtown stadium. Period.
It is apparent every Sunday that NFL football is a meaningful economic driver for San Diego. Downtown hotels begin filling on Friday night and visiting team jerseys are seen all over town.
Qualcomm Stadium in Mission Valley is a football stadium. It’s used for eight Chargers games (more when they earn home field advanatage in the playoffs), and a handful of Aztecs games. And that’s all.
Recent media coverage of Downtown Stadium proposals in San Diego has discussed the recent stadium projects in Denver, Kansas City and Indianapolis. In each of these scenarios stadiums were designed as multi-use facilities to drive revenue dollars from sources other than football.
Indianapolis is host to Superbowl
When compiling a list of resources for hosting an event like the Super Bowl, the first criteria is obviously a stadium–how else could you explain that the Super Bowl will be in Indy in February? If you’re compiling a list of other justifications in naming the site, how could you ever choose Indianapolis over San Diego?
The population of San Diego is more than 500,000 greater than Indy. The tourism infrastructure is established and diverse options exist for the 2 week long hullabaloo associated with the event. And the weather in San Diego is slightly better than Indiana in February.
Phoenix built it’s new stadium in 2006. They hosted the Super Bowl in 2008 and will again in 2015. The estimated economic impact of a Super Bowl on a community is $500,000. If San Diego joins a rotation, like Phoenix, to host this event every 7 or 8 years, the value to the community of a new stadium is exponential.