“I’ve never met so many friendly people,” said Kevin Cronin, a federal government worker and Patriots fan from Baltimore who spent $7,000 on a Super Bowl package that included three nights at a hotel and a ticket to the game.
“Everybody’s been taking good care of me,” added Cronin, 42.
Giants fan Joe Cohen hopes his team makes the Super Bowl again in two years in East Rutherford, N.J. But the Long Island, N.Y., resident thinks a championship game closer to home might not be as enjoyable as the game in Indianapolis, where he found everything in walking distance.
“This was a good party. There’s no way New York will match this in two years,” he said, noting that things back home are more spread out. “The people we’ve met here have been off the charts.”
Jason Pagni, who attended his 15th Super Bowl on Sunday, gave the highest marks for festiveness to New Orleans, where the Super Bowl will play out next year for the 10th time. But Indy was a close second in terms of cleanliness and walkability.
“This has been the best since New Orleans. No question,” said Pagni, a 41-year-old owner of a commercial laundry from New Hamden, Conn. “There hasn’t been one problem here.”
As it basks in the reviews, the city’s focus now turns to restoring a sense of normalcy after days of closed streets and crowds. The big XLVI numbers that adorned Monument Circle in the heart of the city are coming down, as is the zip line that drew more than 10,000 riders, including celebrities and politicians.
Host committee leaders say they will meet with community agencies to review Indianapolis’ performance and submit their findings to the NFL. They’ll also assess the game’s economic impact on the city.
Those findings will help determine whether Indy bids on another Super Bowl.
The earliest the city could aim to host the game again is 2017. Super Bowls are booked through 2015, and Indy is committed to hosting Final Fours in 2015 and 2016.
“That gives us plenty of time to reflect,” Miles said. “But we’re in a position where that’s possible.”