January 25, 1999
It's Super party time
Compiled from staff and wire reports
"You don't want to go through life drunk, fat and stupid," said Jeff DeForrest, a Miami radio talk-show host. "But if you do, Super Bowl week is the way to do it."
DeForrest has survived a dozen Super Bowls, but this one might be his toughest test yet.
For starters, there's not one media party, but two. They're sanctioned by the host committee, as are a cook-off for charity with top chefs from NFL cities showcasing regional cuisine, and a three-day beach party held by the NFL Players Association. The bash on the beach is expected to attract many former and current players.
There are also concerts and VIP gatherings, as well as countless parties not considered official events.
"I heard rumors that Michael Jordan is throwing a party," said Alex Munoz, executive director of the South Florida Super Bowl Host Committee, "and Deion Sanders is having one."
A media party on Tuesday features Big Bad Voodoo Daddy and also includes ice skating in a downtown Miami park. Munoz declined to reveal how he'll produce an ice rink in 80-degree weather.
The biggest bash is the only one hosted by the league -- the annual commissioner's party. Invitations are free but limited, and one broker is selling them for $850 apiece.
Some 5,000 of commissioner Paul Tagliabue's closest friends -- the media, employees of NFL teams and other guests -- will attend the soiree Friday at the Miami Beach Convention Center. The event requires 154,000 square feet of floor space, the equivalent of eight football fields.
"We put an equal emphasis on three elements: decor, food and entertainment," said Sue Robichek, who is planning her fourth commissioner's party. "This year it's an undersea adventure to exotic shores. We'll have three stages of simultaneous entertainment plus smaller stages with live music."
On Sunday, the action moves to Pro Player Stadium. Companies such as Coca-Cola, General Electric and Toyota will hold parties before and after the game in a corporate village that includes 20 tents.
After that there's, oh yeah, the game.
Kickoff is at 6:18 p.m., with Fox carrying the action.
And if you can't make it to Miami for the parties, you can always tune in for the seven-hour pregame show. That's right, Fox's marathon Super Bowl coverage begins at 11 a.m.
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