CLEVELAND - Donald Trump's campaign is considering booking one of Cleveland's big sports venues for his acceptance speech in July, two GOP sources familiar with the planning of the upcoming GOP convention say.
The sources said First Energy Stadium, home of the Cleveland Browns, and Progressive Field, home of the city's Indians baseball team, are the two sites under consideration for Trump's acceptance speech on the final night of the convention.
One of the sources said the campaign is closing in on signing a contract for use of one of the two venues, with the football stadium currently the favorite for Trump's speech.
"It's going to be a big production," a Trump campaign adviser told CNN. "Given Trump's profile and how he handles things, nothing is off the table."
"And he's going to be intimately involved in it," the adviser added.
Trump has said in recent weeks that he wants to add a Hollywood flair to this summer's convention, adding that he thought the nominating event for 2012 GOP candidate Mitt Romney was too boring.
Trump may also campaign in targeted cities around the country during the first few nights of the convention to build excitement for his arrival in Cleveland, sources added.
The Trump campaign is deploying a big team of staffers and volunteers to Cleveland in the coming days to join forces with GOP officials already in place in the city to accelerate planning, which is widely considered behind schedule and up against major logistical challenges.
One serious worry, a convention source said, is whether the Cleveland Cavaliers basketball team plays well into the upcoming NBA Finals, which could further delay event planning at the Quicken Loans Arena, where the convention is scheduled to be held.
Should Trump accept the GOP nomination at the Browns' stadium, comparisons will undoubtedly be made to 2008, when then-Sen. Barack Obama delivered his convention speech to approximately 80,000 people at Invesco Field in Denver.
Then-Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin mocked the Greek columns placed behind Obama during the speech as a sign of the Democratic contender's celebrity candidacy.
"When the cloud of rhetoric has passed, when the roar of the crowd fades away, when the stadium lights go out and those Styrofoam Greek columns are hauled back to some studio lot, what exactly is our opponent's plan?" Palin, a key Trump surrogate, said at her convention speech in 2008.