Jim Wyatt, SENIOR WRITER/EDITOR
NASHVILLE – Butch Spyridon, President/CEO Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp, joined the Official Titans Podcast from Saint Thomas Sports Park on Tuesday morning to discuss the NFL Draft.
Some interesting tidbits that came from his visit with Mike Keith and Amie Wells with a link to the show: HERE.
Most of the parking will be free, Spyridon said.
“Certainly the parking at Nissan Stadium (will be) free,” Spyridon said. “And we have leased several lots around Nissan that will be free.”
Spyridon said there will be private lots charging for parking, “but there will be over 5,000 free spaces in and around Nissan Stadium. And then some of the state lots Thursday and Friday night will be free.”
More details on lot locations will be released in the coming days, Spyridon said.
In addition to Tim McGraw (Friday) and Dierks Bentley (Saturday) performing at the NFL Draft, another Nashville-based band will perform on the opening day of the draft
Spyridon said live music will start at 5 p.m. on the main stage on Thursday.
“We haven’t announced who that is,” he said. “But it’s a pretty cool, I’ll give out, rock experience.”
Also, there will be a “house band” on stage that will play in between draft picks.
“Think about the Tonight Show or Late Night,” Spyridon said. “We’’ll have our own house band.”
A Flycam will run from 1st Avenue to 5th Avenue on Broadway, he said.
“Think about when you’ve got to a game and ESPN has their overhead cam,” he said. “Now we have it for five blocks on Broadway. Pretty cool setting.”
There will be fireworks.
“Anyone who knows me, knows that we’re not going to do a big event without fireworks,” Spyridon said. “So we’ll start with music and we’ll end with fireworks and we’ll have a draft in between them.”
The NFL’s clear bag policy will be in effect.
Strollers will be allowed, but backpacks, wagons, noisemakers, umbrellas, and food and beverage will not be allowed, Spyridon said.
Spyridon said food will be available at the NFL Experience, on Broadway, at Walk of Fame park, and there will be food trucks.
Spyridon said it’s a “rain or shine event.”
Ponchos will be given out, “either dirt cheap or free,” he said.
He said in the worst-case weather scenario would move Commissioner Roger Goodell into Symphony Hall to announce the picks instead of on the main stage as planned.
Spyridon and Titans officials visited with the NFL in New York way back in May 2011 to pitch a Nashville draft, before the league decided to move the draft to other cities.
“The first response was, “We don’t move it,” Spyridon said. “Our answer was: You should. This is a fan event.”
The two sides stayed in touch. After drafts in Chicago, Philadelphia and Dallas, the NFL Draft is scheduled for Nashville April 25-27.
Spyridon said the fan experience will open at noon on Thursday, April 25.