The 2011 NFL Pro Bowl is officially scheduled to return to Honolulu on Jan. 30, one week prior to next year's Super Bowl.
"The Pro Bowl has been a part of our community for more than 30 years, and we look forward to welcoming the game back to Hawaii," Mike McCartney, president and CEO of the Hawaii Tourism Authority, said in a statement. "We know how much the Pro Bowl means to our residents, the players and to the thousands of fans from the mainland who enjoy visiting our state for the game. The Pro Bowl is a great investment for our state with both economic and community benefits."
The HTA will pay the NFL $4 million per game for the 2011 and 2012 Pro Bowls. The last time the event was held in Honolulu, it generated $28.6 million in visitor spending and $2.9 million in state taxes while attracting 18,000 visitors to Hawaii, according to HTA officials.
The 2010 Pro Bowl, played one week before the Super Bowl in Miami, was watched by 12.3 million viewers, the most in 10 years and up 40% from the 2009 broadcast.
"Playing the Pro Bowl before the Super Bowl generated more excitement and interest in the event and also kicked off Super Bowl week in an innovative new way," Frank Supovitz, the NFL's senior vice president of events, said in a statement.