Thursday, October 28, 2010
Photos: Super Bowl XLV rounds into the homestretch, with less than 100 days to go
A room full of dignitaries celebrated the coming of the biggest bowl North Texas has ever seem.
ARLINGTON At noon Thursday, dignitaries sat motionless for 90 minutes and honored America’s favorite past time: football. The event celebrated the 100th day countdown until Super Bowl XLV and brought together business strongholds from across the area and personalities from across the nation. The new Cowboys Stadium in Arlington -- not even completed when the bid was won -- seemed to loom tall and proud.
“You don’t say no to Roger Staubach,” Troy Aikman shared with the crowd as he explained his role on the North Texas Super Bowl Host Committee. “I am proud of the fact that I live in North Texas,” adding, “it is important to me how this region will be showcased not only to the rest of the country but to the rest of the world.” For three years, business leaders have worked to put on this 45th installment.
Mabrie Jackson, president and CEO of the North Texas Commission, says North Texans have a history of coming together for big causes. But she claims that hosting and event such as this is, “not just about football, it’s about a lifestyle, about tradition … and the American dream.”
This year, Aikman and the committee created SLANT 45 (Service Learning Adventures in North Texas). It is the largest education initiative ever undertaken by a Super Bowl Host Committee.
The banter then eventually settled on money. Tickets for the event were $75 each. Parking for regular-season games is $75. A commemorative, hand-decorated helmet by artist Charles Fazzino is $5,000. (Tickets to Super Bowl XLV: priceless?)
But perhaps as important (on Thursday, at least) was the timely question: Who's going to win the World Series? On hand to answer this question were Super Bowl MVPs Aikman and Emmitt Smith, along with Champions Darryl Johnston and Drew Pearson. The football giants flanked Jerry Jones to his left and right, which completed the fierce quintet. They soon donned Rangers caps.
A tribute to Lamar Hunt, Sr.
Lamar Hunt, Sr., son of the Hunt who founded Hunt Oil, founded the Dallas Texans and created the AFL before the NFL put its Dallas Cowboys expansion team here. Before Hunt took this action, the NFL had five teams in the East, five in the Midwest, two in the far West, and not one in the South below Washington, D.C. His legacy and the impact he has had on sports is hard to measure.
It is also because of Hunt that we now have players’ names on the backs of their jerseys; the two-point conversion; and even why the official game clock is also the score-board clock -- a move so that fans could know how much time was left. On the business end, Hunt popularized the Sunday doubleheader and created revenue sharing among teams that is so popular now.
Norma Hunt and son Lamar Hunt, Jr. were on hand to tell the story of how the Super Bowl got its name and how the much longer and awkward, “AFL-NFL World Championship” name was dropped. Ms. Hunt is the only woman to have attended each of the 44 prior Super Bowls and doesn’t plan on missing this one.
Menefee emcees over lunch
America’s most-watched pregame show quarterback, Curt Menefee, hosted the Super Bowl star-filled luncheon. Special guests who also spoke include President and CEO of the North Texas Commission Mabrie Jackson; Gov. Rick Perry; Ross Perot, Jr.; and Roger Staubach. Staubach was instrumental in winning the bid to host this event. It was also mentioned that Dallas has not lost a Super Bowl contest yet.
At today's special event, parking was a breeze, door greeters were friendly and personable, and the entire luncheon went off without a hitch. If Thursday is anything like what we can expect in 100 days, Cowboys Stadium -- and more specifically North Texas -- will not disappoint.
Pegasus News Content partner - The Assignment Desk, DFW
Pegasus News Content partner - Linda McKinney
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