Nashville preps for its biggest party yet with 2019 NFL Draft

The Music City is set to throw its biggest party yet as the 2019 NFL Draft heads to Nashville, Tennessee this week. From Thursday until Saturday, more than 100,000 pro football fans and tourists will be on hand for the selections of top college prospects by 32 NFL franchises.

The NFL Draft had taken place in New York City for more than fifty years. The past three years the draft moved to Dallas, Philadelphia and Chicago. During football season, Nashville plays home to the Tennessee Titans, which moved to the capital in 1999 after 36 years as the Houston Oilers.

Nashville is expected to throw a big party for NFL fans. More than 20 musical acts are set to perform, including country music stars Tim McGraw and Dierks Bentley. A 65-foot tall, 165-foot wide stage will be constructed over the Cumberland River on Broadway Avenue — that is where the picks will be announced. Three designated viewing areas will be set up along the downtown strip together with food trucks, video screens and hotdog vendors. The main draft stage, NFL Draft Experience interactive games, and Selection Square team picking desks will all be free to attend.

At least 100,000 people are expected to descend upon Nashville on Thursday, The Tennessean reports. In 2018, Dallas drew 200,000 fans, generating $125 million for the city, according to a report by VisitDallas. One year earlier, Philadelphia hosted 250,000 people.

The main stage and other structures for the NFL Draft are constructed along the Cumberland River Tuesday, April 9, 2019, in Nashville, Tenn.  Mark Humphrey / AP

Nashville is no stranger to hosting major sporting events. The city hosted the NCAA Women’s Final Four in 2014, the NHL All Star Game in 2016, the Stanley Cup run for the Nashville Predators in 2017, and is set to host the SEC Men’s Basketball Tournament until 2035.

Some of the biggest stars in college football are expected to be among the top picks selected in the 2019 Draft this week, including Heisman Trophy winning quarterback Kyler Murray, defensive end Nick Bosa, defensive linemen Quinnen Williams and Ed Oliver, and wide receiver Marquis “Hollywood” Brown.

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