Super Bowl food

What happens when you combine the year’s most-watched sporting event – the Super Bowl, and in Arizona no less – with the year’s best-attended golf tournament: the WM Phoenix Open?

In addition to an extended celebration, you get food – lots of it, at homes and events. Arizona hasn’t seen a week like this since 2015, the last time the Super Bowl was in Glendale.

While you’re having a great time, please keep in mind the risk of foodborne illness. Just a few simple-yet-important steps will help make sure celebrations don’t leave you battling illness. We detail them on a new website at

If you’re at an event or simply buying food from a vendor on the street, be sure the seller is licensed. If you’re not sure or have a concern, ask to see the food license. Request that any meats are cooked medium well or well done to reduce the risk of illness. 

If you’re hosting a party to watch the games, keep your cooking area clean and cook food to the proper temperature. Be sure your hot food stays hot, or refrigerate it within two hours of when you prepare it. Here are more tips for properly handling food at your home, including washing your hands often, separating your food and cooking utensils, and cooking foods to the proper temperatures.

If you wind up feeling ill, be sure to seek appropriate medical attention and check your symptoms to know whether foodborne illness could be the cause. If you think the source of your symptoms may have been a restaurant or hotel, be sure to contact your county health department to help them identify any potential foodborne disease outbreak.

This likely is the Valley’s biggest weekend of 2023. Enjoy!

Dr. Eugene Livar is the assistant director for Public Health Preparedness at the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS). Eugene has been part of the ADHS team since 2012. He began his public health work at ADHS as an epidemiologist assisting with state efforts covering border health and unexplained deaths. Since then, he has held roles as Healthcare-Associated Infections (HAI) program manager, office chief of Disease Integration and Services, and bureau chief of Epidemiology and Disease Control. Livar has assisted with multiple Health Emergency Operations Center responses during his time at ADHS. In his current role, he leads the division of Public Health Preparedness that encompasses the Bureaus of Epidemiology & Disease Control, Public Health Emergency Preparedness, Emergency Medical Services & Trauma Systems, and State Laboratory Services.

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