Last year -- in a bid to ensure nobody ate pizza at a Sbarro -- Around The NFL put together a visitor's guide to Manhattan for Super Bowl XLVIII. Now we're bringing it back for the city of Phoenix and its surrounding areas.
Here are the areas and events to be aware of as we move closer to Sunday.
Super Bowl Central
Set in downtown Phoenix, Super Bowl Central covers 12 city blocks and will feature concerts, food, spirits and various football-related activities. Phoenix Magazine calls Super Bowl Central "the week-long, pedestrian-only epicenter of Super Bowl entertainment in the Valley." That sounds good to us. Click here for more info.
For the third straight year, the NFL opens up media day to fans. The annual event will feature thousands of media members from around the world asking Bill Belichick about deflated footballs at the same time. The media gets an hour of availability with each team, with fans able to listen in on a radio that can be tuned to NFL Network coverage. Note to Cardinals fans: Patrick Peterson and Drew Stanton are scheduled to appear. You can purchase tickets here.
The NFL Experience
A family-friendly event with more than 50 interactive activities, football clinics, autograph sessions with players, skills games and an opportunity to take a photo with the Vince Lombardi Trophy. (Tickets)
DirecTV Super Fan Festival (Wednesday through Friday): This might be your best chance to meet a Sub Rob Lowe. A three-day festival at Pendergast Family Farm in Glendale, the event will include 12 concerts on two stages. Featured acts included the Zac Brown Band (Wednesday), Calvin Harris (Thursday) and Imagine Dragons featuring Snoop Dogg (Friday). DirecTV has their blowout bash on Saturday night with Rihanna, but that's by invite only. (Tickets)
Madden Bowl XXI (Thursday, Livewire, Scottsdale): Star-studded event that will feature a host of NFL stars and an actual Madden tournament (LeSean McCoy took home the trophy last year.) Nelly and Florida Georgia Line headline. Lil John is the opener.
Rolling Stone Magazine Party (Saturday, 10 p.m., The Venue Scottsdale): Steven Tyler of Aerosmith and Charli XCX are both scheduled to perform. (Tickets)
Taste of the NFL (Saturday, WestWorld of Scottsdale): If you're a foodie with some disposable income to spare, this should intrigue you. Taste of the NFL features 32 restaurant stations and celebrity chefs representing each NFL city. Alyssa Milano co-hosts the event, which is kind of random, but feels fairly relevant. (Tickets)
Leather & Laces (Friday and Saturday, 9 p.m., The Bentley Project): A two-night event co-hosted by Victoria's Secret models Adriana Lima, Lily Aldridge, Behati Prinsloo and Erin Heatherton. The event features an open bar, sushi and a runway for fashion and lingerie modeling. Your uncle would do anything to be here. (Tickets)
Maxim Super Bowl Party (Saturday, 10 p.m., Scottsdale Municipal Airport Hangar): Always one of the biggest parties of Super Bowl season, Maxim's event this year will be hosted by Nick Cannon. (Tickets)
One last tip: If you're in Phoenix, don't hesitate to ask an "ambassador" for help. They're the men and women wearing orange jackets.
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