The Super Bowl is back in Miami and that means there will be a lot of partying going down over the next two weekends. Most regular people are limited to small gatherings in their homes or at bars. But if you’re rich, famous, cool, or beautiful there’s an entire hidden world of lavish revelry. I’ve gotten the chance to see this as an employee for Playboy when I worked the last three Super Saturday Night parties in Detroit, Miami, and Phoenix.
Handling tasks ranging from unpacking boxes to working the red carpet VIP entrance, I know what goes into these events. With any big event, a lot more goes wrong than goes right. Random people crashing your party goes into the “bad things” column — but not if you’re the one sneaking in. Using my experience working these events, I’ll give you a few ways that you may be able to talk, deceive, and sneak your way into the biggest Super Bowl parties in Miami.
PRETEND YOU’RE A BIG SHOT
Most people think that pretending to be a celebrity will get you into a party. While that can work, there’s a far more effective way to assume a fake identity to get into an event. There isn’t much reason to let a celebrity who’s not on the list into a party – other than cool factor. So a better approach is to pretend you’re a big shot client.
Almost all of the parties during Super Bowl week are bankrolled by big sponsors. That means, if you can create a believable story, it’s possible to bypass the guest list entirely. This can be achieved with a reasonable amount of research. Let’s use this year’s Maxim party as an example. Here’s what I’d do to try and lie my way into that party:
- Find out who the major sponsors are. You can do this by searching news for the party’s sponsors. Volkswagen seems to be one of the primary sponsors.
- Determine who the contributing sponsors may be. You can also figure out who the clients are by visiting the host’s website. Both Gillette and Samsung have significant presence on Maxim’s site.
- Figure out who has to take care of the clients. This is typically the sales staff. By visiting Maxim’s contact page, you can see who may handle each account. For example, Peter Saad is the sales guy in Detroit. That means there’s a good chance that the Volkwagen account belongs to him (DISCLAIMER: VW recently moved their headquarters to Virginia). Similarly, Jessica Eldridge handles Consumer Products and likely deals with Gillette. Michael O’Donnell has Electronics, so he probably talks to Samsung. Get it? Michael O’Donnell also handles spirits AKA booze. So he might be the most relevant name to keep in mind since booze is nearly always provided by a sponsor.
With that client and sales staff information combined, you can probably come up with a pretty good story for the front door. Keep in mind that the front door is usually handled by low-to-medium level marketing staff or even an outside events or PR company. So it’s certainly possible to bombard them with information to get your way. Especially considering the fact that it’s so hard to get in touch with people at large parties. In any case, there’s a 90% chance that the people working the door have no clue who the clients are. It might also help to do some snooping around to figure out who the marketing people are at VW, Gillette, and Samsung. But this won’t automatically get you in, so you’ll have to be creative and convincing. It might also help to know the names of marketing people at the sponsor company you’re pretending to be and the name of the advertising agency involved.
PUT YOURSELF ON THE LIST… SORTA
The idea of “the list” can be intimidating to a lot of people. However, a list is only as useful as the information on the page. A guest list for a big party usually has AT LEAST two or three different people adding names and editing it. That means that it’s highly unlikely that somebody will know exactly who is on the list. — especially if they’re standing at the front door of a party.
To accomplish this party crashing technique, you’ll have to be smooth and observant. You may have noticed that people holding the list at parties usually keep it close to their chest. That’s because they don’t want people reading names off of it. You should try to notice a door person who is carelessly handling the list when people walk up. In this scenario, you’ll be learning the name of a person on the list and claiming that it’s you. It’s probably best to have a wingman for this one. That way one person can distract the door person while the other person reads off of the list.
When you find a person waving the list around, approach them as if you’re on the list. One of you needs to distract the door person by saying you’re on the list. You probably want to confuse them so it would be best to say a generic group (i.e. “Jessica Eldridge’s list” taking the name of a sales person from the example above). Hopefully, this will give you an opportunity to read a name off of the first page of the list. Then the second person can chime in and say that their name is on the list – using the intel you’ve just gathered.
The pages of a guest list are usually ordered alphabetically – either by first or last name. So the name you grab off of the list will probably start with something early in the alphabet. Keep this in mind just in case you need to make something up. Hey, there could ACTUALLY BE a Chris Billings (or some other generic name near the front of the alphabet) attending the event. The door staff typically doesn’t check IDs against the names on the list because it’s too time consuming.
SNEAK INTO THE PARTY
There are a few ways to sneak into a party without going through the front door. These methods can probably get you into some trouble. But there usually aren’t real cops on-site at these big events anyway. None of these are guaranteed ways to get in – but they at least give you a few alternate methods.
PRETEND TO BE CATERING STAFF
Super Bowl events require a lot of outside staff. One of the main areas of extra help is catering. It’s pretty easy to dress up like part of the catering staff because they nearly always have generic attire. Basically, you just need black shoes, black pants, a white button-down shirt, and a vest that can go on top of that. Unless the event organizers have paid for catering staff attire to use for one night (which is unlikely), your get-up will probably look very similar to the catering staff. You can’t just walk up to the party in that though. If you’re pretending to be a part of the contracted staff, you probably want to show up an hour or two before the doors are supposed to open. Also, not all parties have catering staff.
BACK DOOR/SIDE DOOR
At a big party, nearly all of the attention (and traffic) is around the front doors. That means you can probably find an unmonitored spot to get in. This isn’t quite as effective if the event is in a bar or restaurant. However, hotels and raw spaces have tons of ways to get in. In Phoenix, Playboy had a huge outdoor area tented for the party and people literally busted in through the cracks in the tent.
Often, there will be a parking lot or limo holding area (so celebrities don’t have to wait) near a back entrance. In Miami, one of the limo drivers got into the party through the back door. He was supposed to be waiting for the DJ and decided he’d just walk in through the freight entrance and enjoy the party. Once he was in the door, there was nobody to stop him.
Most cities don’t allow smoking indoors anymore. So it’s almost guaranteed that a big party will have a smoking area. Typically, event organizers don’t put much staff on the smoking area entrance. So you may be able to sneak into the smoking area and then sneak into the party. You might be in trouble if they require a wristband or a stamp to get back in though.
BRUTE FORCE ON THE RED CARPET
While the public entrance for big events usually requires a ticket, the red carpet almost always depends on a list. There are two techniques listed above that require you to work the door person. This approach is more “brute force” since you will be trying to avoid the door people completely.
In line for the red carpet entrance, there’s usually a lot of traffic. The peak time for traffic on the red carpet is probably from about 11:30 PM to 1:30 AM. If you step in line during this time period, the event staff will likely be dealing with chaos.
The farther away you get from the door, the less control the organizers have over the party. You’ll have to take advantage of this to get into the party. While waiting in line out of viewing distance of the door people and security, let people go ahead of you in the line. Keep doing this until you’re behind a very large group of people that seem friendly. Make sure you start chatting with the people at the back of the group and then attempt to tag along.
Typically, a celebrity will be the only name listed with “plusses.” So you could basically pretend you’re part of Lil Jon’s +15 and stick with the people at the back of that group. Keep in mind that it will be obvious you’re trying to scam them if you’re the caboose of a group of 10 bikini models. The bigger and more diverse the group is, the easier it will be to pretend you’re a part of it.
OTHER SUPER BOWL PARTY TIPS & TRICKS
- The main parties this year will probably be ESPN, Maxim, and Playboy. Sports Illustrated won’t be partaking this year. 944 Magazine is also putting on a big event. Other possible parties: CAA, any official NFL stuff, and then a lot of players and celebrities throw their own events.
- At a big party, door people have to rotate throughout the night since it’s such a long and grueling shift. So if at first you don’t succeed, try again. Door people are probably running on one or two-hour shifts.
- If you try to bribe somebody, take into account the people you’re dealing with. Younger people are more likely to take bribes. So are people who don’t work directly for the people throwing the party. That would include temporary security and outside PR companies.
- A lot of parties will give out tickets that ONLY girls can use. Those probably wouldn’t be very useful to you. But if you can find somebody who’s willing to part with a couple, it might help. If you go to the door and try to use them, you might actually get in. But you’ll probably get denied. In any case, you could say you bought them on Craigslist for a thousand dollars each and then offer a small bribe. They might let you in out of sympathy without paying them anything.
- It’s rare that a party can have too many girls. So you might be able to barter your way into one of these shindigs with women. You’ll probably need at least 10 girls to two guys to get in though — a good ratio is key. If the girls are hot enough and needed enough, a person at the VIP entrance should be smart enough to let you in. It’s probably best to attempt this earlier in the night though before the party really gets hopping and the red carpet line is too long.
- Another approach to the “big shot” technique is to say you’re with one of the VIPs at the party. This can include the host, DJ, or other performers. I’d go with the DJ (Maxim’s DJ next weekend will be DJ Vice) since most front door people will have no idea who he or she is in the first place. It’s also probably better to try to find the back door for this and props might help too. It would be hard to deny somebody who said they were bringing DJ equipment through the back door once the party has started.