People want to engage with ideas, not advertising

When you walk away from a 19- year relationship with college football’s Fiesta Bowl to go “pro” with America’s #1 sports property, communicating that fact can be almost as difficult as the decision itself.

How do you announce something as epic as “Tostitos is now the official chip and dip sponsor of the NFL” and match the magnitude of that message with your actions?  It couldn’t simply be on TV, or even online. This had to be one for all the senses. It had to be all encompassing. It had to be an experience. Thus, Tostitos Party BLVD was born.

The concept: American Ninja warrior meets the ultimate party games.

From Wednesday through Sunday at Super Bowl 49, party met sports as Tostitos challenged fans to complete in a series of larger-than-life tailgate games, while capturing their team spirit with slow motion video, and helping them get their snack on with new Tostitos products.  The BLVD spanned two city blocks, and established itself as the ultimate party destination in downtown Phoenix.  Fans tested their speed, agility and humility as they tackled a variety of backyard party games, including:

  • Slingshot Blitz: A party game favorite reimagined as an arcade-style experience complete with surprising special effects. 
  • Double Dipper Dunk: A duel-themed twist on the classic dunk tank, this game invited participants to hit a target opposite them with a football, to “dunk” their opponent into a massive bowl of Tostitos dip.
  • Mega-Mecha Cornhole: The biggest and baddest game of beanbag toss anyone could ever imagine – a true test of man vs. machine. 

To fuel the competitive spirit, we outfitted participants with wristbands embedded with RFID technology to track their scores and power a “Giferator” that showed images and videos of them showing off their skills.  We also captured real time user-generated #PartyBLVD tagged images and videos to populate an online content hub.

Because a true party isn’t complete without guests who can bring the fun, former San Diego Chargers running back, LaDainian Tomlinson, arguably one of the greatest players of the game (and a guy who knows a thing or two about an awesome tailgate party) and Chip Kelly, Head Coach of the Philadephia Eagles, joined the festivities. They interacted with fans, provided tips to game players, and even got in on the action themselves, challenging participants for top honors.

The “Big Games” may only have lasted a short while, but the bragging rights were forever, and I’m not just talking about the fans. With 1 billion fun-filled impressions generated, we know that people aren’t simply aware that Tostitos is the official chip and dip sponsor of the NFL. They’ve fully engaged with the “idea” of what Tostitos + NFL truly means. And that’s a game well played!


Creating of these games took over 1000 man-hours of custom fabrication and painting. 

  • The dip jars were 14' wide by 13' tall – large enough to hold 86,633 standard sized jars of salsa.
  • You’d need a Tostitos chip that was 6 ft tall to dip this jar of salsa.
  • The Pepsi cups were 3 ft tall and 2.5 feet wide at the top, which means they could hold 430 liters of Pepsi. 
  • The Double Dipper Dunk game platforms incorporated a two-story drop. Custom engineered and machined trap doors were designed just for this. 
  • An entire semi-truck was needed to transport all the foam needed for the padding and pit. 
  • At max pressure, the Mega Mecha Cornhole cannon could fire a beanbag over 80 feet – just enough distance to score the extra point after a touchdown.

Check out the timelapse video of Tostitos Party BLVD being built:

... and here are the games in action:

Before I sign out, I wanted to acknowledge the hard work, vision and creativity of my team members Jeff, Tyler, Pablo, Dana, Neha, Liza, Troy, and Christine, without whom these larger-than-life dip jars, cannons and slingshots would not have been possible.