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Decision on Paul Brown Stadium watch party for AFC Championship game announced

Decision on Paul Brown Stadium watch party for AFC Championship game announced
Published: Jan. 26, 2022 at 3:19 PM EST
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CINCINNATI (WXIX) - There will not be a watch party at Paul Brown Stadium Sunday for the Cincinnati Bengals AFC Championship game, Hamilton County officials announced Wednesday.

Citing various reasons, from “attendance uncertainty” to staffing issues,” Hamilton County Administration Communications Manager Bridget Doherty said the watch party would not be possible.

Here is the statement sent to FOX19 NOW from Doherty:

“Paul Brown Stadium is the people’s stadium. Everyone is beyond excited to watch the Bengals bring home a W against the Chiefs. Unfortunately, given the attendance uncertainty, time constraints, and numerous operational challenges including fan safety and staffing, the County cannot feasibly pull together all the logistics, for a PBS watch party in time for this Sunday’s game.

“However, we will continue to work with all our partners including the Bengals, City of Cincinnati, the small businesses at The Banks, the fans, and others for a future way to continue the celebration. WHO DEY!”

The idea for the watch party at Paul Brown Stadium was mentioned Tuesday by Hamilton County Commissioner Alicia Reece.

She said she was contacted about the possibility of doing a watch party event similar to what other cities have done in the past.

Reece said at the time that logistically there were “lots of challenges” to getting this done.

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After it was decided there would not be a watch party, Reece issued a statement, saying she did not agree with the decision.

“Just like the fans who have flooded my office with calls, excited about the possibility of having an AFC Championship Watch Party at Paul Brown Stadium, I am disappointed and disagree. I truly believe that with all hands on deck, this could have become a reality this weekend like other major cities have hosted watch parties in their facilities.

“This would have been huge for the fans and taxpayers to be able to have access and cheer on our team and could have also garnered national media attention. Our office even received calls where tourists were looking to book hotels in Cincinnati. I will continue to work to have greater access for the citizens to our taxpayer-funded facilities.

“I am asking the administration to start now looking into the possibility of hosting a watch party for the Super Bowl in Paul Brown stadium because I believe that will be the next stop for our Bengals team. WHO DEY!”

With the drive to Kansas City from Cincinnati being more than eight hours, a watch party in The Jungle would have given Bengals fans a place to be together for the franchise’s biggest game in years.

Sunday’s AFC Championship game between the Bengals and Kansas City Chiefs begins at 3:05 p.m. ET.

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