For over 13 years, we have had the pleasure of putting on and hosting NFL viewing parties across London & the UK. We have hosted some amazing nights at iconic venues across the country, met great NFL stars of present and past, as well as helped shaped the UK policy for public viewing.
Sure, we have also worked with some total D-hole promoters and venues, but that’s for another story
2020 however is the most unhinged year yet though, so we will let you know how we will be approaching NFL viewing parties.
Our main goal has always been to provide an authentic NFL viewing experience that allows fans to share in what a truly North American NFL night is like, as well as provide expats with a taste of home.
This involves finding venues that are centrally located, have loads of TVs, are willing to stay open late, and can commit to showing the games regularly.
This isn’t as easy as it seems, as football is still king in the UK, & venues & managers are particularly predatory when it comes to bringing in a new audience & keeping it, even if it means not providing a service.
Essentially they want to bend the promoter over backwards, not pay them, and then try to steal their audience without providing anything in return.
Which is often why we move around like a foster kid, we don’t want to you guys to get screwed over.
Pub chains are not like US bars, but local ones are.
In 2019 we focused more on private viewing parties, as they allowed us to show a bunch of games, stay open late, and offer food trucks and other authentic food until the tube reopened.
Then 2020 hit us a like a double doink in the butt-fumble.
Now we must adapt, so here are a few of the challenges we are dealing with this year.
Trying to understand the government rules on Covid distancing is like trying to explain the game of cricket to an American. The rules seem to change all the time, you have no idea who is in control, and the whole damn thing seems to last forever.
Even in recent weeks we have seen changes from ‘groups of 6 under only’, to the potential of a lockdown being imposed after 10pm. 10pm? On a Sunday night? That pretty much kills the NFL sports pub right there.
Like marriage it’s difficult to commit to the long haul if you think that your partner is crazy, so until the rules and virus have been somewhat managed, we are going to chill-ax this until it all becomes clear.
Add to this lower audio levels, no fan screaming, and distanced tables, and the whole sports night out loses its lustre.
Playing the Covid rules is like playing the Tom Brady Patriots at home, the rules will always change & not in your favour.
He’s moved on, and so can we.
Areas that use to be popular are now not popular because no one wants to risk infection, which means central London is pretty much a dead zone now. London has never really been a ‘late night’ city, which applies even more on Sunday nights when most pubs tend to shut at 10:30pm. We have previously worked with some of these loser pubs, who have no qualms about kicking fans out before the 6pm game has even finished. Totally classless.
Areas like Leicester Square, Camden, Victoria & Old Street are about as appealing to NFL fans as a ‘Keeping up with the Kardashians’ marathon now as it is mostly druggy drunks.
The big trend in 2020 is to ‘think global, but eat local’, meaning many neighbourhood pubs are more likely destinations for NFL parties.
We already work with some pubs in North and East London that are family owned and operated, and will be looking to help host NFL parties at these locations going forward.
Pop-Ups are also in the future for 2020, as they allow us to invite and control the event for your maximum viewing pleasure.
We are always on the look-out for new venues, locations and partners, so please get in touch.
Promoters need to get promoters insurance in case anything happens to you lovely people on our watch. Insurance shows that we are not only legit, but that if we get sued as a result of something happening to a fan, we have a procedure in place. Sadly in 2020 it is impossible to get this insurance due to the unquantifiable nature of the virus and its resurgence. So if someone gets Covid at one of your events, you could be in some serious trouble. Pubs can’t get this either, but they just hope you can’t prove you caught it at one of their locations. This makes it very troubling for promoters of any kind, which is why live events are struggling to rebuild.
We will be looking to host special events as the season progresses. This will of course depend on how bad of a beating the virus continues to lay down on society.
We are still planning on several Super Bowl parties for 2021, as well as playoff parties leading up to it.
What those will look like at this point are anyone’s guess.
Thanksgiving 2020 is also in the works, and we are working with a few venue partners to hopefully pull this off without Covid hitches.
Please watch this space for more info, and we will release news as the government trickles down their Corona double-speak.
If you are a venue, manager or promoter keen to host NFL events-please get in touch to discuss further.
We are also exploring hosting virtual NFL parties with ex players, weekly NFL quizzes that are interactive and loaded with prizes, and Madden e-gaming tournaments.
Again, this is all dependent on how this bloody year goes.
Most importantly is that we all stay safe and sane this season, and that the NFL continues to play without a hitch.
There might no ‘I in Team’, but there is one in ‘I really want the NFL’, and that’s what we need to focus on this year.
Please get in touch if we can help make your NFL viewing experience better this year!