The Free Press, Mankato, MN

Talkers

February 3, 2013

Power outage stops Super Bowl for 34 minutes

(Continued)

NEW ORLEANS —

Officials gathered on the field and appeared to be talking to stadium personnel. Finally, the lights came back on throughout the dome and the game resumed.

“Let’s go!” referee Jerome Boger said to the teams.

The NFL said stadium officials were investigating the cause, but there was no immediate word of why the power went out.

“We sincerely apologize for the incident,” Superdome spokesman Eric Eagan said.

The outage provided a major glitch to what has largely been viewed as a smooth week for New Orleans, which was hosting its first Super Bowl since 2002 and was eager to show off how the city has rebuilt since Hurricane Katrina.

Monique Richard, who is from the north shore of Lake Pontchartrain, had tickets in the upper deck.

“My exact words on the way over here were, ‘I hope this goes off without a hitch,’ because the city just looked so good, they were doing so well, the weather so good everything was kind of falling into place,” she said.

“We haven’t had the Super Bowl in 11 years. It might be 20 more. Hopefully, everybody will be understanding.”

New Orleans was once a regular in the Super Bowl rotation and hopes to regain that status. Earlier in the week, the host committee announced it will bid on the 2018 Super Bowl, which would coincide with the 300th anniversary of the city’s founding.

The 38-year-old Superdome has undergone $336 million in renovations since Katrina ripped its roof in 2005. Billions have been spent sprucing up downtown, the airport, French Quarter and other areas of the city in the past seven years.

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