SANTA CLARA, Calif. (KTVU) - Applicants lined up all afternoon Friday at California’s Great America for a Super Bowl job fair. The theme park is next to Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, which will host Super Bowl 50 next month.
Great America, is hiring now hoping to have people in place before all the festivities and Super Bowl parties begin. They’re looking for chefs, servers, bartenders, and attendants who will be able to get up to speed fast enough for some of the big parties.
"It's had a major impact on us, in a good way," says VP and GM of Great America, Raul Rehnborg.
For the theme park, the Super Bowl means private parties in their pavilion and a game day event for ticket holders in and around their 10,000 seat amphitheater. It also means they need to start hiring now.
"We're hiring probably a month earlier than we normally do so that we have the staff to be able to execute that event," says Rehnborg.
Applicants say Super Bowl parties won't be that different from the hospitality they already provide.
"Like any special event day, there's going to be a lot more guests in the park, and there will be a few additional MVPs. It normally means a more excited atmosphere and it's really fun working those," says applicant Neil Kloper.
Still, prospective employees call this a perk, a chance to be close to the Super Bowl action.
"Actually, we like football so working anything to do with the Super Bowl would be really awesome," says Joshua Diaz, an applicant.
Great America expects to hire about 2,500 people this year. About 300 will be expected to start immediately to handle the Super Bowl festivities. That means, in some cases, about six extra weeks of work.
"I think it's great that they're hiring earlier. We get to know people earlier, to get the experience even more before the actual season opens," says applicant Gabriela Jamaica.
And, in a year when Santa Clara's minimum wage has gone up to $11 an hour, applicants are feeling optimistic.
"Oh most definitely. It's going to help pay some more bills," says applicant Keith Hamilton.
The job fair at Great America runs through this weekend and again next weekend. The park opens March 25th.