The NFL’s Tourist’s Guide to NY and NJ Includes a Rest Stop on the Jersey Turnpike in Its Top 5 Attractions


Some 400,000 tourists are expected to descend on New York City and parts of New Jersey for Super Bowl XLVIII. If you are one of them, you probably have some time to kill before Sunday, and the NFL, at your service, has created a Snow Fall-quality flash website to guide you through this concrete jungle (where dreams are made of).

First stop: Radio City Music Hall. This 1932 Art Deco gem designed by Edward Durell Stone (other works include the Metropolitan Museum of Art and St. Louis’ Busch Stadium) may be famous for its Christmas Spectacular featuring the Rockettes chorus line, but did you know it’s also where where the NFL draft is held? Visit now, and you can take in a display of photographs featuring members of the “elite fraternity” of Super Bowl MVPs on the day they were drafted into the NFL.

Next on our tour is Yankee Stadium. Sure, “The Cathedral of Baseball” was home to Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio, Roger Maris, and Mickey Mantle, and a place where a whopping 26 World Series championship banners are hung. More importantly, were you aware that the 1958 NFL Championship was held here as well? Well, it was.

Up next, Ellis Island. Ellis Island, “the island of hope, the island of tears,” was the first piece of American soil on to which some 12 millions of immigrants stepped between 1892 and 1954 when it operated as immigration station.” Here, “in the spirit of reflecting New York City’s history as a point of entry for people from all over the world,” the NFL has placed “some photos of notable Super Bowl participants who were born outside of the 50 United States.”

Also on the NFL’s tour — or at least it’s supposed to be — is Times Square. There isn’t actually any description on the NFL website of Times Square or of any reason you would go there. (And to be fair, the super-rich who fall in the overlap section of the venn diagram depicting Super Bowl attendees and Broadway show attendees don’t really need to know about Times Square, anyway; they can just send their personal assistants to wait in the cold at the TKTS booth for them.) There are LOUD NOISES on this part of the website though, and there are some pieces of football trivia. (Impress your friends with this fun fact: Eight of the last nine teams to win the Super Bowl were wearing “away” jerseys.)

The final stop on the NFL’s tour, if you don’t count MetLife Stadium, where the game itself will take place, is New Jersey’s “Vince Lombardi Service Area.” What is that? It’s a rest stop on the New Jersey turnpike … named after one of America’s most celebrated football coaches.

Never had the pleasure? Let some expert Google reviewers offer their advice:

Two stars. “Burger King uses a confusing cafeteria style service. They don’t clearly mark sizes or options. Expensive. Very few options.”

Two stars. “Expensive prices on the Sunoco shop $165 for a 94′ car’s battery ouch!!”

Two stars. “Over night Starbucks cashier was on phone and had bad attitude did not deserve his attitude after a 6 hour drive”

Two stars. “What a joke. First we go to popeyes, employees taking cash then handling your food without washing hands. Don’t bother saying anything to the manager Mida, because he doesn’t care, he’s rude and too busy flirting wuth all the employees. Burger King wasn’t any better, $4.35 for a simple cheeseburger. Pass this stop up. Even if you are rich you wouldn’t want to eat here. Digusting!”

Digusting! Well, there you have it. We hope you enjoyed your time in New York and New Jersey! Come back soon!

Vince Lombardi Service AreaVince Lombardi Service Area