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Fireworks going off over Lincoln Financial Field during WrestleMania XL Night 2.

WrestleMania® XL in Philadelphia

Play Video WWE WrestleMania XL
Date May 16, 2024

WrestleMania® XL in Philadelphia

Fireworks going off over Lincoln Financial Field during WrestleMania XL Night 2.

Philadelphia is an unmatched event city.

In early April 2024, Philadelphia hosted the 40th edition of World Wrestling Entertainment’s (WWE) signature annual event, WrestleMania®. The week-long program was the most successful in WWE’s history—and the latest showcase of Philadelphia’s winning record of hosting marquee sporting and other events.

“We knew WrestleMania XL was going to be huge,” said Larry Needle, executive director of PHL Sports. “But the event exceeded even our high expectations.”

The confidence was well-founded. Established in 1987 as a dedicated business development arm of the Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau (PHLCVB), PHL Sports brings championship mentality to every opportunity.

“We are committed to mastering every aspect of the sports tourism industry and the local market,” said Needle. “This sets us up for success in delivering the best possible results for our customers and partners in attracting large domestic and international sporting events to Philadelphia.”

WrestleMania in Philadelphia

From marketing and contracting to logistics and execution, it’s an all-in team effort. Key local and area partners and stakeholders include the City of Philadelphia, the Greater Philadelphia Hotel Association, executives from Philadelphia’s professional sports franchises, including the Philadelphia Eagles, and collegiate athletic directors. All have a seat on PHL Sports’ advisory board.

Meeting planners and event organizers can count on the highest level of inter-agency support when booking Philadelphia.

“All parties proactively support the visitor experience, including our government and business community partners,” said PHLCVB President and CEO Gregg Caren. “When you bring your event to Philadelphia, you are collaborating with dedicated, experienced stakeholders that have considered and coordinated every facet of hosting and executing events for decades.”

Those past wins include hosting WrestleMania 15 in 1999. The event has since transcended the WWE orbit to become a global cultural phenomenon. Since 2016, the week-long sports entertainment extravaganza has created more than $1.25 billion in cumulative economic impact for host cities.

WrestleMania banners hung in Philadelphia

The impact of WrestleMania XL in Philadelphia

WrestleMania 39 generated $215 million for the Los Angeles region, representing a historic high for the WWE. According to the WWE, Philadelphia set all-time records for viewership, merchandise, fan event, and social media engagement to become the most successful and highest-grossing WrestleMania ever. WrestleMania XL broke the previous gate record set by WrestleMania 39 by 78 percent, with 145,298 in attendance at Lincoln Financial Field over two nights. The event drew fans from all 50 states and 64 countries worldwide.

“Putting the incredible product that WWE delivers for its fans in this market moved WrestleMania to an unprecedented new level,” said Needle. “This latest success truly speaks to Philadelphia’s strength as a destination and the package we’re able to deliver for large-scale events.”

The WrestleMania package incorporated Philadelphia’s suite of major multi-purpose event venues including 69,696-capacity Lincoln Financial Field, home of the NFL’s Philadelphia Eagles; 20,000-seat Wells Fargo Center, home of the NHL’s Philadelphia Flyers and NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers; and the Pennsylvania Convention Center. All within easy reach of one another along with hotels, restaurants, and other resources, the collective proximity of these core visitor assets underscores Philadelphia’s strength as a city that functions as an integrated event campus.

“Our accessibility and our incredibly compact footprint are major advantages for supporting major single-day or multi-day bookings,” continued Needle. “Easy to get to and easy to navigate once you’re here, Philadelphia itself essentially becomes the venue. When an event is in town, visitors feel the energy everywhere they go.”

A WWE wrestler shouts to a crowd from a stage.

A city built for a major event

These attributes and capabilities ably support bidding for future events.

“Success breeds success,” continued Needle. “In the past decade alone, we have developed a track record for hosting the country’s biggest events, including the NFL Draft in 2017, the Democratic National Convention, Papal Visit and now WrestleMania.”

Much of this recent evolution, he added, follows investment in expanding Philadelphia’s event infrastructure, including the integrated sports complex, the Pennsylvania Convention Center, and the city’s hotel package.

Philadelphia’s current hot streak continues in 2026 with the NCAA Men’s Basketball first and second rounds, MLB All-Star Game, PGA Championship, and for the first time ever, FIFA Men’s World Cup soccer matches.

This banner year kicks off in January 2026 with the 70th anniversary edition of PCMA Convening Leaders. Founded in Philadelphia in 1956 as the Professional Convention Management Association, PCMA is the world’s largest community for meetings and events planners.

On July 4, 2026, Philadelphia will be in the national and global spotlight as America celebrates the 250th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence. Along with the U.S. Constitution, the Declaration of Independence was debated, adopted, and signed in the Pennsylvania State House, which is today known as Independence Hall, one of Philadelphia’s top attractions.

Independence Hall

“While always playing to our strengths,” said Needle, “we are careful not to work from the same playbook for every event. The goal is to constantly evolve and customize the experience every time to ensure Philadelphia’s success for years to come.”

For more updates on major Philadelphia events, follow our  PHL Sports page.