It’s Wrestlemania week in Orlando.
But if you look outside, you’ll won’t see posters or billboards promoting an event at Camping World stadium. You won’t see hotels booked ceiling to floor with fans. And there won’t be media from all over the world covering “The Showcase of the Immortals” all over town.
In fact, there is an excellent chance that Orlando has already seen Wrestlemania pass it by.
Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, Wrestlemania was moved from Raymond James Stadium in Tampa to the WWE Performance Center at Full Sail University. Because of crowd restrictions, no fans are allowed inside and almost everything will be pre-taped.
If it sounds sad, it is. It’s the exact opposite of what a Wrestlemania should be.
Our hearts should go out to the Tampa area. This was going to be their week. An experience Orlando has already experienced twice before that features events all over town with the athletes. The entire sports entertainment industry outside of the WWE also falls into town, with their own events, spawning more parties and press conferences. It is a real economic generator that also secures thousands of media impressions for the host city.
Here in Orlando, the only exposure we’ll see is the tragic nature of the event being hosted the way it is.
Many believe, it should have been postponed. They might be right. But they’re also forgetting that this is an industry that prides itself on always moving forward. If there is a path to putting on an event for their fans, they’ll find it.
If there is a bright side to all of this, it’s that Orlando is uniquely qualified for this duty. We have the WWE Performance Center where it will all take place, a second home for these athletes. Many of the superstars you’ll see during this weekend’s two night event actually live here in Orlando.
As a community we’re stepping up. And this weekend we’re doing it, even if the world doesn’t know it.