Opinion Matters

With Gazette Opinion Editor Greg Peck

Greg Peck: How much will you spend to watch Super Bowl?

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Greg Peck
January 28, 2015

Are you holding up your end of the economic engine known as the NFL Super Bowl? According to the National Retail Federation's Super Bowl Spending Survey, the average viewer of Sunday's game pitting the Seattle Seahawks against the New England Patriots will spend $77.88, up from $68.27 last year.

So much for “deflategate.”

I heard that figure on WCLO the other morning and almost choked on my Cheerios.

Really? My wife and I probably will watch the game at home. Maybe my son will stop over to join us. We'll probably have a couple of beers apiece, break out the cheese, sausage and crackers and maybe pop in a frozen pizza.

Total outlay? Less than $10 per person.

Sure, we might spend more if we were invited to a party. But after that historic and epic Packer meltdown against the Seahawks, I don't expect that. Even if we were, I can't imagine spending more than $20, perhaps $30 tops per person.

Maybe my wallet squeaks. Or maybe it's just Midwestern values.

How does this survey come up with such a figure?

Well, the survey by Prosper Insights & Analytics factors in fans splurging on everything from game-day food and new televisions to athletic wear and decorations. Total spending on the most-watched sports event of the year is expected to hit $14.3 billion (yes, with a “b”).

The survey suggests that more than 75 percent of Americans—some 181 million—will watch the game. More than three-fourths of them will buy food and beverages, 8 percent will buy team apparel and 7.2 percent will buy new TVs.

Well, not many Wisconsinites will be buying jerseys, unless they do so to support former Badger quarterback Russell Wilson in his quest to lead the Seahawks to a second straight Lombardi Trophy. I'm satisfied with my lone Jordy Nelson Packer jersey, thank you very much.

The survey also says almost 39 million viewers plan to throw parties and an estimated 62 million will attend parties. About 10 million will watch the game at restaurants or bars.

I can see where you might spend much more than I will if you hosted a party with decorations or sat at some bar or restaurant.

But $77? That's far too rich for my taste—and budget.

Greg Peck can be reached at (608) 755-8278 or [email protected]. Or follow him on Twitter or Facebook.

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