PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) – Holidays, events and the Super Bowl will flood our Arizona economy with millions of dollars. As a result, businesses are trying to maximize their success. Single mom Imelda Hartley says she’s ready to cash in on the Super Bowl exposure.
Hartley owns a catering company called Happy Tamales. Right now, she rents space in a commercial kitchen, but dreams of one day owning her own, with childcare to keep families close. “When we work 10-12 hours. We don’t get to see them, hug them and kiss them, and that’s what I’m trying to do. “To do that, I need to make a lot of money,” Hartley said.
So, to earn a lot of money, she has to sell a lot of tamales. She plans to do it during the Super Bowl. It is one of nearly 200 Arizona businesses selected by the NFL and Arizona Super Bowl Host Committee for the Super Bowl 57 Business Connect program. All businesses are owned by minorities, women, veterans or members of the LGBTQ+ community. The NFL could use its services.
“I’m honored because as a minority, it’s very difficult to be known in the community, for people to know what I’m trying to do trying to make a difference. You know, sometimes we don’t get the chance,” Hartley said.
In 1996, the Super Bowl brought in just over $300 million to the Valley’s economy. This number increased to $500 million in 2008, and in 2015, $720 million.
“This is really the peak week of economic benefit for us having the Open and having the Super Bowl on basically the same day. It’s just such a big deal economically, said Chris Camacho, President and CEO of the Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC).
Small businesses get it and are gearing up. Hartley says she’ll be ready with her hot tamales. “We will be selling for a week out in Downtown Phoenix to the public,” Hartley said. “I’m so excited to have my name out there,” she said.
The Business Connect program selected businesses in the event industry such as audio-visual, catering, floristry, printing and security. These Arizona-owned businesses are then highlighted in a resource guide for the NFL to hire while you’re in town for the Super Bowl.
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