Last year around this time, as one of 250 businesses accepted to the approved supplier NFL Business Connect program, PopUP CleanUP was scurrying around getting ready for several branding activations and corporate events related to Super Bowl LVI when the Rams and the Bengals faced each other in LA.
This year the Chiefs and the Eagles will face off in Glendale, Arizona, and an estimated 99 million people will watch, most of whom will do so with other people. As an event cleaning company, we're always down with throwing parties. So we've thrown together this post with a few pointers for how to make your party sail into the end zone with as few fumbles as possible.
First off, the Super Bowl is LONG. Most NFL games last three hours. This one clocks in at least around four. There's the pre-game show, the national anthem, the God Bless America, the coin toss, and at that point we haven't even gotten to the kickoff yet. Then there's the fact that ever since Apple threw the tomahawk in their 1984 commercial in...1984, Super Bowl commercials have been considered to be events in and of themselves, and given how much money the NFL and broadcasters make off of them, they squeeze in as many as possible, stretching the limits of the game. Plus the slightly over a half hour halftime show usually featuring a mega-music star (this year's artist is Rihanna). So it's wise not to start your party too early or people will have drunk themselves under the table before the end of the first quarter.
It's also wise not to invite people who are uninterested or ambivalent about football unless you know they will have company (like fellow husbands or wives of your football-crazed friends) and create a separate area where they can talk but still feel included.
First off: cleanliness and supplies. The more people you invite. the more important it is to have adequate bathroom supplies. Think six rolls for every 20 people, so make it eight. You will need hand towels, hand soap dispensers, and plenty of trash liners which should be checked on and changed at appropriate intervals to prevent overflowing. If you have multiple bathrooms, for your own privacy and sanity, consider marking the master bath and ones off the bedrooms as off-limits and funnel your partygoers towards your guest bath.
Also remember that if you live in an old house, plumbing could be an issue. Most residential toilets are built to flush 20 times a day, not 200 times an hour. So make sure that your plumbing can handle the work load.
Potlucks are always iffy because most people don't cook anymore and unless you have a cohesive group, it's hard to get a well orchestrated menu. Also, where you put the food is important in terms of creating atmosphere. I once went to a Super Bowl party where the host kept the food in the kitchen and none around the sofa which was where you needed to be to watch the game. So most of the guests hovered around the food in the kitchen far from the television set.
You could make things easy and have the food catered and hire help if you want to go upscale. Most Super Bowl spreads revolve around finger food such as chips and dips, crudité, pizzas, burgers, buffalo wings, barbecue, hot dogs, empanadas, or taco bars. Many people are starting to eat healthier, so also consider a buddha bar, pre-made salads, veggie burgers or veggie chili, and guacamole. If you are going to serve raw veggies, opt for the juicier and sweeter ones like tomatoes, carrots, cucumbers and sugar snap peas since celery, cauliflower and broccoli tend to go uneaten and can cause digestive upset next to all those flour-heavy foods.
As for the alcohol, make it light. We're aiming for 80 for Brady enthusiasm levels not Animal House, and make sure if someone drinks too much, you take away their keys and Uber them home. Last year 46% of the 244 driving accidents that occurred on Super Bowl Sunday were drunk driving related. That doesn't include all the people injured or whose overconsumption creates other emergency health conditions.
Or you could watch with your cats. They're relatively low maintenance, but they won't high-five you when your team scores.
PopUP CleanUP is available for all large-scale events including corporate functions and branding activations related to the Super Bowl for sports and entertainment companies.