Cape residents cheer Super Bowl
The New Orleans Saints and Indianapolis Colts faced off Sunday night in the NFL’s Championship Game, Super Bowl XLIV, while crowds of Cape Coral residents joined in the excitement.
At the conclusion of a very close game, the Saints pulled off a last-minute victory over the Colts, 31-17, when Tracy Porter intercepted a pass from Colts quarterback Peyton Manning and ran it 74 yards for a touchdown. Saints QB Drew Brees was voted the game’s Most Valuable Player.
Restaurants and bars throughout the city hosted hundreds of people cheering for their favorite team, while homes on varying blocks threw their own party among friends and family.
Stevie Tomato’s Sport Page locations on Del Prado Boulevard and Pine Island Road were sold out Sunday. Both restaurants sold each seat to fans ahead of time and were forced to turn away people who came looking for a place to watch the game.
“We sold all of our seats and all of the bar outside,” said Mark Porter, manager of Stevie Tomato’s on Del Prado Boulevard.
Three months ago the restaurant opened its outside bar and Porter said it’s really helping to bring in fans. Cape Coral resident Debbie Gilhooly, at Stevie Tomato’s with two friends, said this was the first time she’s been able to watch the game in a long time.
“I’m usually working,” she said. “We’re going for the Saints. New Orleans needs that spirit and needs uplifting.”
Some fans showed up early to have something to eat or to begin ordering drinks, and the restaurant even set up an Xbox game system so fans could play mock games with Madden NFL: Football Video Game.
The Leapin’ Lizard Bar & Grill in downtown Cape Coral expected a large crowd. Manager Alex Gniazdowski said the restaurant has been drawing crowds by showing NFL games all season. He wasn’t sure how many people would show up but they offered specials on food and drinks.
Bob Ziegenfus came to Leapin’ Lizard to watch the game with his son Ryan. The last time he watched a game at home was in the late 1990s.
“I’ve been going out from whenever Kiss played, that’s the last time I watched a game at home,” he said.
Kiss performed for the halftime show in 1999, but this year the show featured The Who. The band performed some of its biggest hits for about 12 minutes including “Who Are You” and “Won’t Get Fooled Again.”
Valarie Erb also watched the game at the Leapin’ Lizard. She wasn’t a fan of the Colts or Saints, but she came wanted to see who would win.
“I’m a Ravens fan but I’ll never root for the Colts,” she said.