Eagles in London: How to cheer the Birds on abroad and what to see while you’re there
What to do if you're an Eagles fan in London this week.
This week, the Philadelphia Eagles have flown the coop and traveled east.
As the NFL continues to cultivate a fan base overseas, the Birds are set to take on the Jacksonville Jaguars at Wembley Stadium on Sunday, one of three London games organized by the league.
While tickets are sold out, according to the NFL, here are ways you can still watch — and some in London are gearing up for a party, inside or outside the stadium.
Anthony Bullick, 33 of North Wales and an Eagles fan since the early 2000s, has run a British Eagles site and podcast for a little shy of a year. Come Sunday, you'll find him at Wembley.
"As soon as I heard they were coming, it was — the schedule is cleared, the time's getting booked off at work, I'm putting in all the holiday forms I need to and clearing everything with the wife because we've got three children and it was like, I just got to be there," he said.
Bullick encourages British Eagles fans and Philly fans heading to London to reach out for advice or recommendations. But, he'll likely point you in one direction: Passyunk Avenue, the Philadelphia-themed bar/restaurant London.
"That is going to be the place to be," Bullick said.
Of course, owner JP Teti, who's from Lawrenceville, N.J., and has family ties to South Philly, concurs. His business isn't even a year old but is one of TripAdvisor's top-ranked restaurants in London. Plans are in the works for expansion, he said.
Even Mayor Kenney and members of the Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau are set to head to an event at Passyunk Avenue ahead of Sunday's game, which the mayor will be attending, a city spokesperson confirmed.
"This is going to be the only place that's really vibing, I think, in a way that you would expect an event that is a Philly sort of linked event to vibe," Teti said.
Tickets for the 500-person tailgate watch party are sold out, but there's still a chance of getting in. And even if you can't, the bar will be partying before then.
"It's going to be crazy," he said. "We've got a whole sort of half week of stuff leading up to it just because there's so much interest in our brand that week and people wanting to be a part of it."
What if I’m in Philly for the game?
Then you're at the wrong how-to-celebrate guide. My colleague Bethany Ao has the go-to list of where to watch the NFL London game in Philly on Sunday.
What’s happening in London
80 Cleveland St, Fitzrovia, London
The Philly-themed restaurant promises booze, food, and giveaways, as well as a live stream of the game on a jumbo screen. Stand-by tickets will be sold on a first-come, first-serve basis as people from the tailgate depart for Wembley Stadium. On Wednesday, the restaurant will host a sports trivia night, Thursday will have a "special event with VIP guests" — which Teti wouldn't describe further. A Super Bowl rewatch is planned Friday, while a Mummers-themed costume party is slated for Saturday. Those events aren't ticketed, but Teti encourages fans to secure a spot to the events ahead of time by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
66 Trafalgar Square, London
The NFL has chosen a pub to be "dedicated" to an official team while abroad. The Eagles' is The Admiralty, with events happening all week leading up to Sunday. A schedule of events can be found on the NFL's website.
21 London Street, Paddington
Philadelphia Eagles UK — not affiliated with Bullick's site — will have a meetup at a Paddington pub on Saturday, according to its Twitter account. The pub, the Sussex Arms, is also expected to show the game Sunday and offer specials.
Head down to Wembley anyway
Bullick suggests that if you don't have tickets to the game, it's worth hopping on the Tube anyway and checking out the pubs within a walking distance of the stadium that are likely to be playing the game.
"Head up to the stadium, because I think the atmosphere around the stadium is going to be incredible with the amount of Eagles fans going to be there," he said.
His recommendation? The Green Man Pub along Dagmar Avenue.
Drexel Alumni Watch Party
An Eagles fan in London and a graduate of Drexel University? A Drexel Alumni Watch party is going down at J.J. Moon's at 397 High Road near the stadium Sunday. Registration is encouraged.
If you already have a ticket, chances are you'll find yourself at the NFL's official 2018 Wembley tailgate from 9 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. where there'll be games, cheerleaders, "American-style food," and more. The Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau will also host a Philly-themed photobooth at the tailgate, where ticket holders can get their photos snapped at LOVE Park, the Philadelphia Museum of Art steps or along South Broad Street — with a little help from a green screen.
What else to do in London
Rather that hitting up Google for "top things to do in London," the Inquirer and Daily News snagged a couple of recommendations from Passyunk Avenue owner JP Teti and Anthony Bullick of british-eagles.co.uk.
Here are Teti's picks:
Buy an Oyster Card: "I would get on a double-decker bus on the top level in the front and I would ride it around it around the town for a little while so you get an understanding of sort of, the geographical layout of things … It's a good way to see the city and it's a good way to see the city cheaply."
Harrods: "If you just want to see a spectacle of commercialism and merchandising, [head to] Harrods department store. It's worth popping in there and just being appalled by the sort of overwhelming nature of it all and then popping out of there."
Ride the London Eye: "It's a bit cheesy, but it's something I like doing and I recommend to people who are coming to London, especially for the first time … You get a real sense of the city, you get a real sense of the scale, you get a real sense of geographic proximities and on a nice day, you get some really beautiful views of the city."
Here's what Bullick recommends:
Belowzero Ice Bar in Mayfair: "Relive the wintry conditions of Minneosta during Super Bowl 52 by enjoying a drink in an ice bar!"
Hyde Park: "Enjoy a leisurely stroll through the famous park, or head to speaker's corner — although we can't guarantee an epic Jason Kelce Super Bowl parade speech."
The Shard: "Winning the Super Bowl was the high point in Philadelphia sports history. Celebrate with a drink at the top of the tallest building in the U.K."