This time around, only Talbert has voiced concerns about President’s Day weekend while the other major Super Bowl players are pushing to bid for all three weekends in 2016. They say the stakes are especially high since the 2016 Super Bowl is the 50th anniversary of the game.
Grossman is urging a Fort Lauderdale-based Super Bowl if Miami-Dade can’t handle it, while Barreto is floating the idea of docking cruise ships on the Miami waterfront to house overflow from Super Bowl and Boat Show.
The issue is only hypothetical now, since the NFL has not yet scheduled a Super Bowl on President’s Day Weekend. But it’s become enough of a concern that Barreto received tacit endorsements for his position when he and Dolphins CEO Mike Dee went before the Miami-Dade County Commission after Tuesday’s press event.
“I want to be real clear that this community is a can-do community,’’ said Commissioner Jose “Pepe” Diaz. “I believe it can be done. I believe we can handle both things at the same time.”
So far, the Boat Show has refused to move to another weekend in 2016, saying a switch would cost it visitors and exhibitor dollars. Some Boat Show events take place in downtown Miami, too, making the four-day holiday stretch one of the busiest one the tourism calendar each year.
The Visitors Bureau is a non-profit with its own independent board, but it relies on taxes from Miami Beach and taxes charged to hotel restaurants in Miami-Dade for about 85 percent of its $23 million annual budget.
Mayor Gimenez said Miami-Dade faces some “heavy lifting” for the 2016 bid, but that the 50th anniversary of the Super Bowl is too important to not pursue fully. “You have this community behind you,’’ Gimenez told Barreto and Dee. “We know how to host two parties at a time. We’re going to do that.”