As good AZ it gets

Kira Rios, Sports Editor

Erie, Pa, February 21, 2023—On February 9th, 2023, twenty-eight of Gannon students and Dr. Yoo and Dr. Brownlee were on their way down to Phoenix, Arizona for Super Bowl LVII. We started our trip on Thursday with a charter bus down to Pittsburgh for our first flight, after having a layover in Nashville, Tennessee, we were on our way to Phoenix.

Arriving around 11:00 PM, we got to our hotel and settled in before getting a good night’s rest before our adventure began.

The next morning, we were up bright and early at 7:30 AM to head to State Farm stadium for our last set of training. After touring the stadium, we finished training, met our team manager Josh and took a walk to the location we would be working on game day, Touchdown club.

Finishing at noon, we headed back to the hotel and prepared for some fun activities. While most of the group met up later to go on an extreme mountain hike, I took this free time as a chance to see my brother and sister-in-law.

I haven’t visited my brother and his wife since before I started college in 2021, so it was a nice reunion. We went to the Phoenix Zoo and spent time petting stingrays and visiting the different attractions. After a couple of hours at the zoo, we said our goodbyes and I headed to Glendale to hang out with other students.

Since the Super Bowl was being held in Phoenix this year, Nike offered a “Nike by You,” exclusively for Super Bowl week. After buying two pairs of Air Forces and a Nike hoodie, I set an appointment for the next morning to customize the Nikes. Those of us in Glendale went to Yardhouse, which is a popular restaurant in Phoenix, and we were close enough to a Marshmello concert and could feel the bass shaking our seats.

The next day, we headed back to Glendale to customize my Nike merchandise to be Phoenix themed. After we finished at Glendale, we headed to downtown Phoenix to work the NFL Experience.

At the NFL Experience there were NFL players, NFL cheerleaders, autographs, the Lombardi trophy, games, and so much more that we were able to work. A couple of us left a few hours early to head over to a nearby concert held for the Super Bowl. With Kane Brown and Imagine Dragons performing that evening, the venue was packed but both were good entertainers.

We arrived back at the hotel at 1:00 AM leaving us with little sleep for game day. Waking up at 5:30 AM we prepared to head over to the State Farm stadium for the big game. After working a pregame party and watching the Super Bowl in the stadium we headed back to the hotel for a good night’s rest.

Monday, February 13th we were to tour Arizona State University and Chase Field; however, events were cancelled due to complications out of our control. Despite this, we still toured downtown Phoenix on scooters, stopped in Guy Fieri’s restaurant, and hopped back on our scooters for a more in-depth tour.

After having enough fun on our scooters, we headed over to Scottsdale to continue our fun. Spending hours in the mall and Old Town Scottsdale, we ended up having dinner in a small place called Sauce which was a pizza and pasta place.

For our final hours of the trip, on Tuesday morning the group separated again, and some went on a walk/hike in the park and others went to breakfast. Meeting up in the hotel lobby, it was time to head back to Erie, PA.

Sadly, once we arrived in Denver, Colorado for our layover, our next flight was delayed due to our crew being behind because of weather related issues. Finally, arriving in Pittsburgh, PA at 2:00 AM, Wednesday morning we were exhausted. Once on our charter bus home we were able to be back in Erie at 5:00 AM and was tired to say the least.

Yet, this trip allowed us to create connections and lifelong memories with each other that will never be forgotten.