The AP's Stacey Plaisance reported the "glitzy Mardi Gras Krewe of Endymion rolled its parade and super float through the Superdome on Saturday night," marking the venue's first major event since the Super Bowl XLVII blackout. While the black tie ball was "nowhere near the size of the championship game a week ago, it was a test for dome officials and the stadium's electricity provider, Entergy." The stadium lights were "dimmed for the ball, but there were no signs of any electrical problems" (AP, 2/10).
BANG FOR THE BUCK: In Daytona Beach, Eileen Zaffiro-Kean cited a report as saying that Kansas Speedway's $300M casino was "providing positive cash flow" to ISC. that should be in the $15M range for the '13 fiscal year. The success of the casino and restaurants also suggests new development around Daytona Int'l Speedway "could stay busy year-round as well." DIS President Joie Chitwood said that with tourists "coming to Daytona Beach year-round ... he's not worried about [the] new development sitting empty" (Daytona Beach NEWS-JOURNAL, 2/10).
NAME GAME: In Houston, Joseph Duarte noted during a Friday groundbreaking ceremony for the Univ. of Houston's new football stadium, AD Mack Rhoades announced a $5M gift from the John O'Quinn Foundation to "keep the name John O'Quinn Field at the stadium." An agreement has "not been finalized, but the Cougars are expected to play their six-game home schedule and Bayou Bucket against Rice next season at Reliant Stadium" (CHRON.com, 2/9).
DEVILS IN THE DETAILS: In Phoenix, Metcalfe & Ryman reported the Arizona Board of Regents "approved" Arizona State Univ.'s plan to "move its baseball team to Phoenix Municipal Stadium, likely starting in the 2015 season." ASU now can "finalize a 25-year lease agreement with the city of Phoenix to replace the Oakland A’s as Phoenix Muni’s sole tenant" (AZCENTRAL.com, 2/8).