JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Not long after Jacksonville was announced to host the celebration marking President Donald Trump’s acceptance of his party’s nomination for re-election, a video featuring Mayor Lenny Curry was posted on Twitter.
“Jacksonville, I know what you’re thinking. Are we big enough, bold enough to host the RNC?” Curry says in the video. “What city would take on the Republican National Convention with just 75 days to pull it off? Probably not many, but Jacksonville isn’t just any city. Here in the River City, we do things big and bold, and we’ll be ready.”
During a News4Jax Facebook Live conversation on Thursday night, a number of viewers shared concerns over how Jacksonville will handle such a large event. Others were looking forward to it, comparing the event to 2005 when Jacksonville hosted the Super Bowl, when 100,000 visitors filled the streets of downtown.
The River City became the smallest city ever to host a Super Bowl. To handle the lack of hotel space, five cruise ships were docked along the St. Johns River. Approximately 800 buses were used as shuttles.
But you don’t have to travel back 15 years to see other large events hosted in Northeast Florida. Since 1892, The Players Championship has been held at TPC Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra. The four day event brings in an estimate $151 million for Northeast Florida, raising a record $9.25 million in 2019 for charity.
In 2016, The Players executive director said nearly 55% of ticket purchases originated for outside Northeast Florida’s five county area