ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Celebrity chef Robert Irvine visited St. Paul in July to talk to local business leaders about how they can get ready for the Minnesota Super Bowl.
Comcast Business hosted a tailgate event at Cooks of Crocus Hill on Grand Ave. with the Food Network host. Comcast owns NBC which is airing the Super Bowl next year that will be broadcast on KARE 11.
"The Super Bowl is not only about highlighting what football is but it's also about the local businesses and they benefit tremendously. If you're not ready for it, you're going to lose business," Irvine said.
The Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee expects an economic impact of $400 million.
Troy Reding, owner of Rock Elm Tavern in Plymouth, attended the event and said, "We're opening a restaurant in the St. Paul airport, Holman Field. We'll be targeting to open in November, getting ready for the Super Bowl, a lot of plane traffic going in and out of there. So we're hoping for a lot of business."
Through a partnership with Comcast Business, Irvine speaks to groups about the perks of technology--especially within the hospitality industry.
"We want our business owners to be ready for that influx of business that they don't have already and that means technology," Irvine said.
When talking about customers' needs during the Super Bowl, Kalyn Hove, vice president of Comcast Business for the Twin Cities region, said, "They're going to be very dependent on Wi-Fi, high-bandwidth, the ability to leverage their tools as needed. Naturally, to broadcast but also to communicate. There will be a lot of entertaining going on but businesses, as a whole, just need that ability to increase bandwidth to meet their needs."
Besides talking about technology, Irvine demonstrated how to create several elevated tailgate dishes. He also gave attendees tips on cooking with ingredients like oil, salt and pepper.
With so many first-time tourists expected to visit the state for the Super Bowl, Irvine said, "They're going to come in in a pack, and they're going to leave in a pack. If you're not ready for that, oh boy will you miss an opportunity of a lifetime."
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