CINCINNATI — The idea of watching the Cincinnati Bengals in the AFC Championship game with tens of thousands of your fellow fans won't be happening at Paul Brown Stadium.
Hamilton County Commissioner Alicia Reece raised the idea earlier this week for a massive Bengals watch party at Paul Brown Stadium Sunday for their game against the Kansas City Chiefs.
Despite massive support on social media, Hamilton County said in a press release on Wednesday that they were not able to pull it off due to the short turnaround.
“Paul Brown Stadium is the people’s stadium. Everyone is beyond excited to watch the Bengals bring home a W against the Chiefs," said Bridget Doherty, Communications Manager for Hamilton County. "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.
Harrison Butler from Forest Park said he's been to almost every game this season and hoped to watch Sunday's game from his seat in Paul Brown Stadium.
"There's got to be something that we can do as a city to turn up and enjoy this moment altogether," Butler said.
Reece said she asked Hamilton County Administrator Jeff Aluotto to explore whether it was possible to allow fans into the stadium to watch the game. Reece said other cities host watch parties in their venues, so Cincinnati should too. She also believes the Bengals playing for the AFC Championship would have helped shine a national spotlight on Cincinnati and could potentially generate a tourist interest in the region.
"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!” Doherty said.