'Ultimate Super Bowl' event will stay in southern Dallas

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by DAVID SCHECHTER

Bio | Email | Follow: @davidschechter

WFAA

Posted on January 24, 2011 at 9:21 PM

Updated Monday, Jan 24 at 9:33 PM

DALLAS — A Super Bowl event aimed at raising money to help inner-city children will stay in southern Dallas after all.

Last week, we told you how safety concerns and a squabble between organizers and city officials threatened to cancel The Ultimate Super Bowl Week — or at least relocate it out of Dallas.

The Ultimate Super Bowl Week is the only Super Bowl party planned for southern Dallas. On Monday, organizers huddled with city leaders and found a way to salvage the party, and hopefully turn their luck around.

The Ultimate Super Bowl Week event was conceived to raise $1.7 million for student tutoring programs.

But when organizer Bruce Carter found his huge tents did not meet the city's safety requirements, the event was suddenly without a home.

Dallas City Council member Tennell Atkins stepped in Monday morning. "The mall owner is now working with Bruce to try to bring the majority of the event inside of the mall — not outside of the mall," he said.

In fact, Southwest Center Mall has agreed to hostmost of the major family events indoors over a six-day period.

Adult-oriented parties will take place at the Bob Knight Fieldhouse nearby.

Word of the agreement quickly spread to the Internet, where party attendee Vivica A. Fox discussed the situation on YouTube.

But the initial confusion over the event may take its toll on fundraising efforts. After investing $600,000, organizers are now hoping simply to make their money back while providing southern Dallas' only Super Bowl event.

"I believe in my heart of hearts that everyone that lives south of [Interstate] 20, they would stop and come out here and enjoy themselves vs. driving 20 miles when you can get the same enjoyment here," said event organizer Bruce Carter.

The event has also been plagued by a perception that Southwest Center Mall is not safe. A deputy Dallas police chief said crime at the mall is down 10 percent year-to-year, adding that holiday crime was down 48 percent.

E-mail dschechter@wfaa.com

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