Tag Archives: Arizona Cardinals

Bill Molloy

After Hours: Bill Molloy of Ensemble DevMan

Bill Molloy
Managing Director, Ensemble DevMan of Arizona Born in Brooklyn, N.Y. Attended Cornell University, where he received B.A. in 1972; and MBA and MHA in 1974. Founded the DevMan Company, a medical and healthcare real estate brokerage firm, in 1981; merged his company with Ensemble Real Estate in 2008.

Accomplishments
Being a member of Cornell’s 1971 NCAA championship lacrosse team and completing more than 20 marathons, including Boston and New York.

Responsibilities
Bill Molloy leads the company’s brokerage operations in five states and is responsible for various aspects of new business development.

What would people be surprised to know about you?
Competing with my border collies in the sport of dog agility. I have won the North American dog agility competition and qualified and competed in more than half a dozen national championship events. When my youngest dog, Cork, is not competing, she volunteers for a local hospice as a therapy dog.

Favorites
SPORTS TEAMS: Arizona Cardinals
ACTIVITIES/ DESTINATIONS: Anything outdoors. Some of his favorite moments include climbing the Grand Tetons and Mt. Rainier, cross-country skiing around Mt. McKinley in winter, and rafting the Grand Canyon.

Advice
RECEIVED: It’s not the places you see … it’s the people you get to know.
TO SHARE: Find a speciality area such as retail, office, land, and focus on it.

For more information on Bill Molloy and Ensemble DevMan of Arizona (now named Ensemble Real Estate Solutions), visit Ensemble DevMan’s website at ensemblere.com.

AZRE Magazine March/April 2012

Wolfley's

Steak And The Game At Wolfley’s Neighborhood Grill

By now it no secret that I am a food junkie, but let it be known that I am a sports junkie as well—  and I am excited that the Phoenix Suns are in full swing! I’m not going to start any arguments regarding their record or skill this season because regardless of how they are playing, there are few things I enjoy more than a sports bar full of local fans — good food and great service. Sound too good to be true? Look no further! Wolfley’s at Desert Ridge has all of this and more.

Now don’t get me wrong, sometimes I like the small, family-owned corner joints as much as the next person, but Wolfley’s offers a fun, family-friendly atmosphere for all to enjoy — not to mention a large, trendy patio equipped with cornhole for friendly competition.

Owner, Ron Wolfley, is a four-time Pro Bowl player, sports talk-show host and commentator for the Arizona Cardinals. He has done a great job of combining the enjoyment of 27 HD screens with the modern décor Phoenix clientele have come to expect. Even if you are not a sports fan, Wolfley’s has enough charm to win you over.

Décor and atmosphere, check. Now on to the food. As many of you know, when it comes to sports bars, you often have to choose between the right atmosphere to enjoy the game and food quality. It is rare that a restaurant can provide both, but Wolfley’s has done just that.

We visited on a Monday night during happy hour. They provide a nice selection of $3-$5 dollar options with both food and drink options. Additionally, we found out Monday is their 20 percent off of any steak special. I have to also mention that their menu is very robust. They offer things from your typical appetizers to family platters, build your own burgers and pizza.

Appetizer

In true bar food fashion, we started with the basics: artichoke dip ($8.75) and wings ($8.95).

The artichoke dip is what you expect. It was hot, the chips were fresh, and the taste was good. The wings were a step above the norm. We ordered the honey gold and mild. The wings were large, and the sauce was great.

Entrée

I decided that I would take advantage of the steak special. I ordered the New York Strip ($19.95). The steak was good. I can’t honestly say that it was better than others elsewhere; but it was cooked perfectly, and the accompanying vegetables and side salad complemented everything nicely.

Dessert

Sorry folks, happy hour drinks, two appetizers and a steak had me wanting to sneakily unbutton my jeans! Both the server and bartender did a great job of describing their dessert options and suggested their favorites.

All in all, it was a great visit. The vast menu is a plus for the customers but did seem to be a bit overwhelming to our server. To her credit, the answers that she didn’t have she quickly found out for us. I would recommend Wolfley’s for a night out with friends or a good option when you want to catch the game and bring your children at the same time. Now, if I could just get better at cornhole …

Wolfley’s Rating:

Food: 4 out of 5
Atmosphere: 5 out of 5
Service: 4 out of 5

If You Go: Wolfley’s Neighborhood Grill

21001 N. Tatum Blvd., Phoenix
Desert Ridge Marketplace
(480) 515-2424 ‎
wolfleys.com

Glendale CVB - AZ Business Magazine July/August 2011

Glendale CVB Expands Its Mission, Scope By Serving Entire West Valley

Glendale CVB – Whether travelers are visiting for leisure or business, Glendale has blossomed from being considered a one-day destination to a highly sought-after travel experience both nationally and internationally in a single decade. And to successfully market Glendale’s increasing expansion as the host city of sporting and mega-events — as well as the entire West Valley — the Glendale Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) was formed in July 2010.

The first incarnation of the CVB was formed in 2007, with partners comprised of representatives from Glendale, Westgate City Center, University of Phoenix Stadium and Jobing.com Arena. This group was called the West Valley Events Coalition and eventually grew to 300 members. Its growth led to the creation of the CVB within three years.

“As a brand new CVB, one of our primary focuses is to increase awareness and exposure of our region through various activities that showcase the West Valley,” says Lorraine Pino, manager of the CVB.

The Glendale CVB promotes Glendale are through a regional visitors guide and sponsoring events to media buyers in national and international markets.

With venues such as the Phoenix International Raceway in Peoria, Jobing.com Arena in Glendale and spring training sites across the region, the Glendale CVB has successfully collaborated with businesses and West Valley cities to make these events possible and boost tourism.

According to Pino, the spring training facilities generate $328 million annually, and the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl in Glendale generates $200 million per year. In addition, there is revenue from concerts, Arizona Cardinals and Phoenix Coyotes games and NASCAR events. As a result, hotel room count in Glendale alone has more than tripled from 400 rooms in 2007 to nearly 1,500.

“The West Valley is the real hub of spring training in Arizona, showcasing nine of 15 teams in the Cactus League,” says Frank Ashmore, director of sales and marketing for The Wigwam in Litchfield Park.

Because the CVB has been able to bring sporting events to the area, in turn attracting visitors, businesses in the region are benefiting.

The events have made a huge impact on all neighboringbars and restaurants, says Michelle Sniegowski, sales and marketing manager for The Shout! House in Glendale.

“The events bring in thousands of people; they fill our venue and in turn boost our economy,” she says.

One attraction vitally important to the Glendale area, according to Pino, is Westgate City Center. It generates tax revenue by drawing visitors from around the world.

Paul Corliss, director of communications for the Phoenix International Raceway, says “the West Valley certainly deserves attention.”

“It’s the quality of dining, shopping, hotel rooms, spas, convention space and more that keep (tourists) coming back,” says Nicole Traynor, director of public relations for Westgate City Center.

As West Valley tourism increases, The Wigwam is receiving a facelift from its new owner, the development company JDM Partners. Headed by former Phoenix Suns owner Jerry Colangelo and his partners Mel Shultz and David Eaton, JDM Partners is investing in the multimillion-dollar restoration, with Phase I recently completed.

It seems to be making a difference. “Group markets are up nearly 50 percent over the last year,” Ashmore says.

Arizona Business Magazine July/August 2011

ACA Board of Directors

Arizona Commerce Authority Board Of Directors Comprised of Statewide Leaders

The Arizona Commerce Authority aims to boost Arizona’s economy by creating jobs for Arizonans, attract and bring in new business, as well as show corporations Arizona is a better operating environment and a better place to collaborate and grow.

The following ACA Board of Directors are leaders within their respective fields:

Metro Phoenix

Chair: Gov. Jan Brewer
Co-Chair: Jerry Colangelo, Partner, JDM Partners
President and CEO: Don Cardon
Hon. Kirk Adams, Speaker, Arizona House of Representatives
Richard Adkerson, CEO, Freeport McMoRan Copper & Gold
Benito Almanza, State President, Bank of America Arizona
Dr. Craig Barrett, Chairman of the Board and CEO (Retired), Intel
Michael Bidwill, President, Arizona Cardinals
Donald Brandt, Chairman of the Board and CEO, APS
Drew Brown, Chairman of the Board, DMB Associates
Les Brun, Chairman and CEO, SARR Group
Hon. Robert Burns, President, Arizona Senate
Steve Cowman, CEO, Stirling Energy
Dr. Michael Crow, President, Arizona State University
Jerry Fuentes, President, AT&T Arizona/New Mexico
Dr. William Harris, CEO and President, Science Foundation Arizona
Linda Hunt, President, Catholic Healthcare West Arizona
Mike Ingram, CEO and President, El Dorado Holdings
Sherman Jennings, Chair, Governor’s Workforce Policy Council/
Human Resources Site Leader, The Boeing Company
Anne Mariucci, Regent, Arizona Board of Regents
Dr. Vicki Panhuise, Chair, Arizona’s Aerospace & Defense Commission/
Vice President, Honeywell Military Aircraft
Mary Peters, President, Mary E. Peters Consulting Group
Doug Pruitt, Chairman and CEO, Sundt Construction
Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong, Executive Chairman, Abraxis BioScience
Mo Stein, Principal and Senior Vice President, HKS Architects
Pat Sullivan, CEO, Flypaper Studio
Roy Vallee, Chairman of the Board and CEO, Avnet

Tucson

Gary Abrams, CEO and President, Abrams Airborne Manufacturing
Peter Herder, Chairman of the Board and CEO, Herder Companies
Dr. Robert Shelton, President,  University of Arizona
Judith Wood, Chair, Governor’s Council on Small Business/ President, Contact One Call Center

Flagstaff

Dr. John Haeger, President, Northern Arizona University
Michael Manson, Co-Founder and CEO, Motor Excellence

Prescott

Dr. Jeanne Swarthout, President, Northland Pioneer College

Yuma

Victor Smith, President and Owner, JV Farm

Heart Star: Larry Fitzgerald Of Arizona Cardinals Always Watches His Health

As one of the best receivers in the NFL, Arizona Cardinals’ star wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald is serious when it comes to his health and well-being. Although he’s “very thankful” that heart disease and stroke don’t run in his family, Fitzgerald isn’t taking any chances. His “job,” as he calls it, requires him to stay fit and healthy at all times.

“I pride myself on eating right and exercising regularly. During the season, of course, exercising is a part of my job each day I go to work,” Fitzgerald says.

The 6-foot-3, 218-pound Pro Bowler has made wellness part of his daily routine.

“The team has ‘on field’ practices and we are also required to lift weights, as well. Breakfast and lunch are provided, and I choose to make healthy eating choices,” Fitzgerald says. “During the off season I try to stick to these same rules.”

His dedication to a healthy diet and daily exercise has paid off. Following an amazing career at the University of Pittsburgh, Fitzgerald was the third overall pick in the 2004 NFL Draft by the Cardinals.  His best season came in 2008, when he caught 96 passes for 1,431 yards and 12 touchdowns. That was the same year the Cardinals went to the Super Bowl.

Fitzgerald says his formula for health is simple.

“First, everyone should be sure to take an active role in their health and well-being by making sure to regularly participate in some form of physical exercise,” he says. “There are many components to staying in shape, such as looking after your cardiovascular fitness level, increasing your strength ability, as well as working on your range of motion, otherwise known as flexibility.

“Second, you have to eat right,” Fitzgerald continues. “Portion control is the key, I think. Just watch what you eat and be sure to eat a variety of foods each day.”

Clearly the plays Fitzgerald makes off the field are as important as the ones he makes on the field.

Arizona Business Magazine Jan/Feb 2011

Sea Life Interior

Paramount Promotions Puts Its Products On The National Stage

Each year Paramount Promotions transforms the University of Phoenix Stadium from the home of the Arizona Cardinals into the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl with colorful and eye-catching graphics.

 

 

Paramount Promotions Tostitos

Photo: Paramount Promotions

 

 

Phoenix-based Paramount Promotions designs and manufactures most of the graphic signs, banners and inflatables for the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl held in Glendale annually.

The company created 25-foot tall inflatable Tostitos chip bags for the Fiesta Bowl, along with most of the banners and signs in the University of Phoenix stadium that can be seen during the game.

The 2011 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl was the second year of a five-year agreement between Paramount Promotions and the Fiesta Bowl. In addition to the Fiesta Bowl, Paramount Promotions also creates graphic signs for the Insight Bowl, held in Tempe at Sun Devil Stadium each year. The company also created graphic banners for the University of Arizona’s football stadium.

“Working with bowl games have always been probably my favorite,” says Brad Bergamo, president of Paramount Promotions. “It’s always fun to go in and take a stadium and completely change the look of it. … So, you go from a stadium that’s just a lot of concrete, colorless, to having a lot of color and graphics.”

Although making over the stadiums is Bergamo’s favorite project, Paramount Promotions does much more.

The company, which was established in 1992, also designs and manufactures wraps for boats, cars, trailers, golf carts and more, all at its Phoenix location.

Paramount Promotions produces light boxes, banners, billboards, fence wraps, window graphics, inflatables, flatbed boards and more that can be seen across the country. The company also makes “fly guys,” the dancing or wiggling inflatable “men” often seen on the side of the road.

Paramount Promotions, which employs 11 people, serves clients nationwide, but about 85 percent of the company’s business comes from Arizona companies and individuals, Bergamo says.

 

 

Sea Life Exterior

Photo: Paramount Promotions

 

 

Another large project Paramount Promotions undertook was creating all of the signs and wall graphics for the Sea Life Aquarium at Arizona Mills.

With the use of digital printing machine, the Nur Expedic, Paramount Promotions prints an average of 1,800 square feet per hour. At that speed, the company could wrap 30 semi-trucks per day.

Even though Paramount Promotions works with large clients such as the Fiesta Bowl and the University of Arizona, it also offers many services for individuals and small companies.

Currently, the most common product for individual clients is canvas paintings of personal photos. The company has also done life-sized wall graphics — similar to Fathead sports wall graphics — of individuals or their children playing sports.

One of the more creative ways people use Paramount Promotions is to create a large graphic photo, whether it be of the beach, mountains or snow, to cover the boring brick walls that are so common in Phoenix.

“We’re pretty diverse right now. So as of right now, we’re not looking to expand into other products or services,” Bergamo says. “We’re trying to specialize in what we do now.”

The company has been growing steadily, even in the recent down economy, Bergamo adds. In the fall of 2010, Paramount Promotions acquired MonsterColor, a local, large-format printer. The acquisition has expanded Paramount’s capabilities.

Q&A With Michael Bidwell, Chairman Of GPEC, President Of The Arizona Cardinals

Michael Bidwill
Chairman, GPEC
President, Arizona Cardinals

Why did you opt for a second term as GPEC chairman?

It is an honor to serve a second year as chairman of GPEC. The organization is doing meaningful work, and I wanted to help build upon that work. I think it’s also important to provide consistency in leadership, particularly during times like this. Over the last year, GPEC has made impactful contributions to Arizona’s economy, including our work on the renewable energy incentive program (SB1403). We have much more to do and serving another year as chairman will allow me to continue to work closely with the governor, Legislature and business community on vital economic development issues.

You have been GPEC’s chairman during one of the worst economic downturns the Valley has seen in decades. What lessons have you taken from this experience and what have you learned about the business community?
Our state was unprepared for the slowdown in the economy and the ramifications are going to be sobering in 2010 for those not following the state budget cuts. It is clear that the business community needs to lead the effort to diversify our industry base. And it is equally clear that we have many talented, passionate business community members who are ready to step forward and provide new leadership. Like in football, we need a game plan and players on the field to execute it.

Economists say the recession has made Arizona more affordable again, and thus more attractive to relocating companies. Do you agree with this assessment, and how is GPEC making sure the Valley maximizes its competitiveness?
I believe it is one factor, but not significant enough to be a game changer. Arizona needs to understand that we compete for business expansion and relocation with our Mountain West competitor states. Decision makers who decide where these projects (and jobs) are located factor many things: an educated work force, cost of and access to capital, business operating environment and an ability to attract and retain talent. Housing costs play a role, but our competition has a leg up on Arizona in many of the other areas. We need to stress to our elected officials that we need a game plan to recover from this downturn and diversify our economic base.

GPEC has targeted the renewable energy industry as a source of new business opportunities. How do Arizona’s efforts to attract green companies compare with those of other states? How would you assess any progress the state has made?

With the passage of SB1403 last session, we are well positioned to land new solar and renewable energy companies. But Corporate America is going green too and looking for green or LEED-certified buildings. Arizona needs to develop new programs to bring our commercial buildings to LEED certification. There is no doubt this will help in our effort to land new projects.

What are some of the goals and initiatives GPEC is taking on this year and how will it go about achieving those goals?

We have several efforts. First, we are providing analysis to the Legislature on how rewriting the state’s Enterprise Zone legislation will stimulate job creation and fill some of the empty commercial space. Second, we have renewed our focus on marketing Greater Phoenix with an emphasis on positive business news and opportunity. We’ve created a new Web site called opportunitygreaterphoenix.com that showcases the region and unique opportunities businesses and people have here. Next, we are organizing executive missions to Washington, D.C., and New York, where we’ll meet with leaders who can help influence positive economic activity for Arizona. And of course, we’ll continue to work hard to bring solar and renewable energy companies to Arizona under the new incentive legislation passed last summer. It will be a busy year and we are committed to doing all we can to improve the Valley’s economy and bring jobs to this region.

www.azcardinals.com


Arizona Business Magazine

February 2010

Michael Bidwill Arizona Cardinals

Q&A: Michael Bidwill, President, Arizona Cardinals

During these difficult economic times, how vital is an organization such as the Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC) to the local economy?
GPEC is vitally important because it is the only regional organization focused exclusively on bringing new business to Greater Phoenix. Because GPEC works closely with companies considering expansion to the region, they know what companies need to make business decisions and gain insight into what steps the state can take to better compete with our Mountain West competitor states.

What can the Valley do to better position itself to succeed once the recession is over?
Diversify our economy and work with public sector leaders to create sensible, new programs that bring high-wage industries to Arizona. During the last decade of the real estate explosion, Arizona was one of the leading job-producing states. Over the last two years, we have fallen to 49th in terms of new job creation. Business as usual will not work. Now is the time to change our metrics and compete for other industries to migrate to Arizona.

Arizona and Greater Phoenix routinely lose projects to less desirable locations because of aggressive relocation programs in other states. GPEC has developed modest, fiscally responsible programs, such as the Quality Jobs Through Renewable Industries program, for the Arizona Legislature to consider. GPEC has vetted these programs with decision-makers in the renewable energy industry. Senior executives within these industries have told us this program would put Arizona in a more competitive position to win projects. GPEC also had Elliott D. Pollack and Company conduct a third-party review of our program to confirm its fiscal impact.

We need to immediately work with the state to develop and implement new programs that make our region more competitive.

What are some of the initiatives and goals you have planned this year for GPEC, and how will you go about achieving those goals?
In addition to solar and renewable energy, GPEC has three other strategies that we feel are meaningful generators of new business. We continue to work aggressively on a foreign direct investment program, as the United States is still an attractive environment to invest in for international companies. Next, in working with many of our public sector leaders, we are actively seeking to locate companies to Greater Phoenix from neighboring states with higher operating costs of doing business. Lastly, health care in Arizona is an untapped resource. In fact, Arizonans routinely seek health care outside of the state valued at hundreds of millions of dollars. We need to work with the health care industry to determine the needs not currently being met in Arizona and look to those opportunities for economic growth.

How did you first become involved in GPEC and how have your own professional experiences prepared you for your current role?
The Arizona Cardinals have long been stakeholders of GPEC, as we believed in its important work. I had no personal involvement until Glendale Mayor Elaine Scruggs asked me to serve on the GPEC board three years ago. I was honored to join and realized quickly how critical this organization is to helping our local economy grow, especially during this downturn and with the state’s budget cuts to the Arizona Department of Commerce.

You’ve seen first hand how important professional sports are to the local and regional economy. How can the Valley capitalize more on that in the future?
Sports are important to Arizona and we need to support what we have now. But, again, we need to focus on diversifying our economy. Like a personal stock portfolio, we cannot become “over-weighted” in any single sector. We have all the teams we need, but it will be important to attract events with significant economic impacts and exposure like the Super Bowl in the future. Our regional success will depend largely on creating a diverse and vibrant economy around many new industries and we can’t look to real estate or sports to take us out of this downturn.

Home Run

Playing The Economics Of Sports In The West Valley

Home Run

Playing the economics of sports in the West Valley

 

It’s not so much a case of “if you build it, they will come” that is turning the West Valley into a sports mecca. Rather, it’s the other way around. People have come to the West Valley in droves, setting the stage for an economic explosion and a sports megalopolis. The Arizona Cardinals stadium opens this month, the NHL Phoenix Coyotes play in adjacent Glendale Arena, five Major League Baseball teams conduct spring training at West Valley sites with two cities avidly seeking other teams to call their own and Phoenix International Raceway stages two major NASCAR races a year.

home_runEconomist Elliott Pollack says population growth came to the West Valley first. Contrary to the view of some, Pollack says, “The Phoenix area grows like a balloon in a very orderly manner, at its periphery. Growth got to the west side and the area was looking for an image.”

He calls Glendale Mayor Elaine Scruggs “a very smart lady,” who took advantage of the situation—a population explosion and an abundance of available land. The growth is happening not only in Glendale but in Peoria, Surprise, Goodyear, Avondale and Buckeye as well.

Cardinals Stadium and Glendale Arena essentially created a focal point for that area. “It gave the media something to focus on,” Pollack says. “The area would have grown anyway, but now with a much better image than before.”

Julie Frisoni, marketing and communication director for the city of Glendale, agrees. “Growth is driving the West Valley expansion,” she says. “Much of the East Valley is built up and developed. In the next 15 to 20 years, 40 percent of all growth will be west of the 101 (Agua Fria Freeway).”
People moving to the West Valley expect good housing, quality jobs, entertainment and sporting options, restaurants and shopping opportunities, Frisoni says. “Glendale always has been a bedroom community, a place where people lived and went somewhere else to work and for entertainment. Growth demands the amenities you’re seeing spring up.”

With growth comes soaring land prices. When the deal for the Glendale Arena was struck in 2001, agricultural land there was selling for $2 a square foot. Today, commercial land at the Westgate City Center in Glendale carries a price tag of as much as $25 a square foot. In seven to 10 years, Westgate will have 6 million square feet of retail and restaurants.

Jack Lunsford, president and CEO of WESTMARC, a West Valley economic development organization, says the sports explosion is having a huge dual impact—direct and indirect—on the West Valley economy. The direct impact is fairly easy to calculate. For example, Lunsford says, each of the two NASCAR races are worth $200 million to $250 million to the local economy, and the 2008 NFL Super Bowl, $250 million to $300 million. Add to the mix the Fiesta Bowl and the NCAA Bowl Championship games, plus the hundreds of events, concerts and meetings to be held in the Arizona Cardinals stadium and Glendale Arena and the economic impact is huge, he says.

Spring training is yet another economic engine. The Kansas City Royals and Texas Rangers train in Surprise, the Milwaukee Brewers are in the Maryvale area of Phoenix and the San Diego Padres and Seattle Mariners share a stadium in Peoria. Glendale and Goodyear are on the hunt for Major League teams and appear serious about building their own stadiums. “In two years we could end up with eight teams in the West Valley,” Lunsford says.

Frisoni says Glendale has entered into an exclusive agreement with teams to discuss a potential spring training site. She won’t say how many or which teams the city is targeting or where a stadium site would be. “We are continuing to move forward,” Frisoni says. “We expect a resolution very soon.”
Meanwhile, the Goodyear City Council in March approved a site for a new spring training complex and gave the City Manager’s Office authority to seek Major League teams. Goodyear Mayor Jim Cavanaugh says the complex would be located on the Woods’ Family property east of Estrella Parkway near Yuma Road. The ballpark complex would include commercial, office, hospitality and residential uses.

AZ Business MagazineLunsford notes the indirect impact of the West Valley’s sports explosion is the retail and service development that those kinds of activities spawn.
Economist Pollack sees a change overtaking the West Valley, particularly in the Westgate City Center complex. “There was a lot of economic development going on during construction of the stadium and arena, bringing in retail and more revenues,” he says. “Hopefully the concept will be that people will go there, eat, shop, go to a game or a concert and then go home. Now, they go to a Coyotes game, get out of their car, see the game, get back in their car, and go home. There are not a lot of places to eat on the west side, and that will change.

“It’s not that the arenas created the growth, they created a focal point for growth. It’s going to be a sports and retail mecca that people from other parts of the Valley will go to see games and concerts.”

www.westmarc.org

 

 

Arizona Business Magazine Aug/Sept 2006

 

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Scott Norton

Arizona Cardinals Stadium Plays Host To Outside Events

Beyond Football

When the pigskin isn’t flying, Arizona Cardinals Stadium plays host to an impressive lineup of outside events.

By Tiffany M. Obergfoll

Valley sports fans share their anticipation as Cardinals Stadium draws nearer to opening day this summer—an opening day that will offer a glimpse of what’s to come, as the state-of-the-art facility will host the annual Tostitos Bowl and the first of many super bowls in 2008.

beyond_footballLong ago outgrowing their devilish college stadium, the NFL team finally comes into its own on Aug. 12 against the Pittsburgh Steelers. The move even helped the Cards sell out of season tickets for the 2006-2007 season—an impressive feat for a team that holds more low attendance records than Super Bowl appearances.

But the stadium is more than the steel embodiment of a fan’s dream. The uniqueness of its design establishes it as one of the most efficient and versatile structures in the history of sports complexes. Already famous for its appearance on the Discovery Channel’s “Extreme Engineering,” the stadium’s 12-million-pound rolling function permits the natural grass field uninhibited access to the Arizona sun without the high cost associated with completely removing the roof. The design also eliminates humidity problems other facilities face while attempting to sun their fields indoors. Removing the Bermuda hybrid turf when it isn’t being trampled by 22 sets of cleats also allows it to heal better in its natural environment—the grass is, indeed, greener on the other side.

In addition to the agricultural benefits resulting from the hour-long field exodus, the stadium’s interior is entirely transformed by the absence of its playing field. Teeming with 160,000 square feet of open, climate-controlled convention space uninhibited by columns or other impediments, the field-less stadium interior is fully geared with an electrical grid and ready for large-scale events. Global Spectrum, the facility’s management company, has booked everything from motocross events to food shows and women’s expos to maximize non-football revenue.

Working under contract with the Arizona Sports and Tourism Authority, Global Spectrum promotes and markets the multipurpose facility in accordance with Title 5 of the Arizona Revised Statutes, which requires the involvement of a third-party company. The Philadelphia-based firm also committed to finance the development of numerous spaces within the stadium.

Scott Norton, director of sales and marketing for the company, manages the building from an operational standpoint, “It’s cool and clean,” he says. “We have trade and consumer shows, private and public events, corporate and social functions, auctions—even weddings and proms.”

The stadium’s VIP Club rooms offer 39,000-square-foot lounge areas ideal for corporate and social functions, and the South-End Stadium Bridge consists of 12,500 square feet of open space overlooking the stadium floor. “We offer an unmatched setting,” Norton explains. “We don’t have a ballroom to hold a super-swank wedding, but we’re unique, especially for sports-minded people”—particularly those who do not mind an occasional Budweiser advertisement accompanying team insignia throughout the building.

AZ Business MagazineNorton, who has acted as Global Spectrum’s director of sales and marketing since March of 2005, is realistic about the facility’s appeal. “We’re not competing with the Marriott and the Phoenician,” he points out, shifting focus toward the unexpected and off-the-beaten-path appeal of Cardinals Stadium. Public tours are just one of the bonuses groups can opt for, and Global Spectrum’s large parent company, Comcast-Spectator, has many connections “to help book non-traditional, non-sports events.”

Of course, Glendale is quickly establishing itself as the metropolitan sports hub of the Valley, but the city’s newest megastructure demonstrates how innovation and efficient design allows both sports and non-sports events to flourish under one gigantic roof.

 

www.az-sta.com
www.azcardinalsstadium.com

Arizona Business Magazine Aug/Sept 2006

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