If you find yourself at Walt Disney World on Super Bowl Sunday (that’s tomorrow, for those who are not professional football fans!), what’s a guest to do?
Those who don’t care to watch the game — to the commercial debuts or half-time show by Bruno Mars — can take advantage of the almost-deserted theme parks. Super Bowl Sunday is actually one of the least crowded days at Walt Disney World, so make the most of it! Even with the new limited FastPass+ system, you should be able to easily experience many attractions, and the weather is expected to be sunny and warm.
Should you be in the other camp and among the millions of fans looking forward to the big game — or just vacationing with someone who is a football fanatic — there are plenty of places to catch the game on television screens at Walt Disney World. Probably the first one that comes to mind for many folks is the ESPN Club on the Boardwalk because of its sports theme, 100 television screens, and traditional “game day” food. Consequently, the ESPN Club fills up early — folks have been known to arrive hours early to secure a spot. The restaurant does take reservations, which many guests don’t know, a cast member told me. So, call 407-WDW-DINE to check if there’s a spot for you.
The ESPN Club is not the only place to watch the Super Bowl on Disney property, though. There are quite a few restaurants at Downtown Disney that will be hosting fans: Bongo’s Cuban Cafe, Wolfgang Puck Cafe, House of Blues, Paradiso 37, Plant Hollywood, Rainforest Cafe and Fulton’s Crab House.
Plus, Splitsville is having a Super Bowl-ing Party for adults ages 21 and older who want to see the big game on its 40 flat-panel screens. For $75, each person will receive complimentary appetizers and open bar from 6 to 9 p.m. Open bowling is an additional $20, and part of the proceeds will go to Orlando-based Clean The World Foundation, a non-profit organization that collects and recycles soap and shampoo products from the hospitality industry and distributes them to impoverished communities worldwide.
In past years, the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex has had two viewing locations open to the public — ESPN Grill and the Jumbotron at the Welcome Center. The Grill is open again this year, but it closes at 9 p.m., so that might not be your best choice, given that the game is unlikely to be over by last call. (Kickoff is at 6:30 p.m.) The complex has not announced whether the Super Bowl will be shown on the Jumbotron because there is a softball game scheduled on the field earlier.
And then there are plenty of viewing locations at the Walt Disney World hotels, starting with the comfort of your own room. Fox television station will be carrying the 48th Super Bowl in the Orlando market; that’s Channel 11 at Walt Disney World resorts. Want to join your fellow fans? Most of the pool bars and hotel lounges also will have the game on, though they may not have multiple screens.
Finally, if you’re going to be at the Magic Kingdom on Monday, be sure to check the Times Guide because you might be able to see your favorite player in person. The Super Bowl MVP traditionally comes to Disney World and will be feted in a celebratory parade down Main Street, U.S.A.
Some guests can continue their Super Bowl celebration all year with an offer from the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin. Residents of both Washington and Colorado will receive a free night at the Walt Disney World hotel when booking two nights at the standard price before Feb. 28 for stays through Feb. 3, 2015. Some restrictions apply. To make reservations, call 1-800-227-1500 and mention their home state.