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Keeping the tradition

Football fans across campus begin to organize pre-game Super Bowl parties

superbowlWith a few days left before Super Bowl XLIX, Americans across the country are awaiting the match up between the New England Patriots and the defending champions, the Seattle Seahawks. Here at Concordia, students, faculty and staff awaiting the Feb. 1 event are currently looking forward to partaking in their Super Bowl traditions.

While others are focused on the game itself, some individuals make an event of the day. For those of you that choose to celebrate throughout the day, you are probably going to relate well to the Rhonda Woodworth’s Super Bowl experience.

During the week, Woodworth cooks for students at Concordia College’s Dining Services. However, on Feb. 1 the Pittsburgh Steelers fan will be spending her afternoon making her way through a 12-hour road map dedicated to the Super Bowl XLIX. As fan of ESPN2, Woodworth’s day starts off with watching the NFL featured stories of players in the Super Bowl and doing lots of cooking.

“You know you’re kind of busy making stuff all day and listening to the TV,” Woodworth said. “It’s either going to be something in the crock pot – I make chili and then, I have to make a dip and cheese and crackers.”

For Woodworth, the whole day is a part of the big game, and timing is everything. She believes there is a time to cook and listen to the commentating and a time to nap before the game.

“Yeah, you have to take a nap too – so you can stay up for the whole game,” Woodworth said. “When the game starts at 5:30 and you’re messing around and doing all the stuff … you take a nap.”

Unlike last year’s blowout Super Bowl, Woodworth hopes that the New England – Seattle match up is entertaining. According to Woodworth who is pulling for the Patriots, her daughter, the only other football fan in her household is going to be enjoying the festivities with her in a cozy home setting.

“[The day] starts at 10, then it doesn’t end until 10 o’clock,” Woodworth said. “You know, that’s a good 12-hour day of listening to football.”

There are also the party-planners who have gatherings at their homes for the spectacle. Junior Liz Bitzan, comes from a family of Green Bay Packers fans is one of these individuals. The Bitzans are premier Super Bowl entertainers. Bitzan, who is also ingrained in her family’s big game tradition, mentioned that the commercials are one of the highlights of the evening.

“The event is the Super Bowl, but we really look forward to the funny commercials,” Bitzan said.

In the Bitzan household, the festivities start in the afternoon, where some close friends gather for a few hours before the game to catch up, play some party games and even eat cake. Bitzan plans to get her hands on some navy, green and grey food colors as she roots for the Seahawks.

“We always decorate cakes of each football team,” Bitzan said. “My sister and I will play rock-paper-scissors to see who gets to decorate which team’s cake. We go all out.”

After the cake decoration and Ping Pong games, it is nearly game time. The living room is spread out for the football pack with some taking the couches, while the rest sit on the floor. According to Bitzan, the family and friends will take part in a trademark card game and have Ping-Pong for the younger kids. All in all, Sunday looks like it is to be another vibrant gathering at the Bitzan residence.

“[The Super Bowl is] kind of an excuse to get a bunch of our family friends together,” Bitzan said. “We really hang out and watch football.”

Speaking of watching football, there are some people who don’t. Around campus, there have been some Packers fans that haven’t gotten over their NFC Championship loss to the Seahawks. Some students don’t even know who is playing in the Super Bowl.

But for many, life goes on the day after the Super Bowl. At an institution like Concordia, the Monday after the Super Bowl is not going to be a snow day – so the dog can’t eat your homework, your class notes if you are teaching, or the keys to your office. Students still need to get all of their work done. Casey Hatlevoll is one student who won’t be watching the Super Bowl on Sunday.

Hatlevoll, a junior with a double major in mathematics and education, has a lot on her plate. Even with the Super Bowl coming up, Sunday is still a homework day. According to Hatlevoll, her decision to skip the upcoming game has come as a progression of events in her life.

“My parents always watched [the Super Bowl], so I would just watch it with them,” Hatlevoll said. “I just got busier coming to college.”

It is not that she is not curious about the biggest sporting spectacle of the year, but as a former tutor on Sunday nights, Hatlevoll could not watch the Super Bowl. She also admits that her interest in football is minimal, making it easier to be less invested in planning to watch the game.

“Being in college, I have always been busy on that night anyway,” Hatlevoll, said. “I had it streaming on my laptop just in case I wanted to see the score, but I wasn’t bummed that I was missing the game.”

This year isn’t going to be any different. Hatlevoll will be doing her homework while occasionally checking on the game. The Bitzans will enjoy family friends as they host a Super Bowl party at their home. Woodworth will keep her daughter’s company throughout the 12-hour experience she has planned.

And to you, good luck with your Super Bowl Sunday plans, Cobbers.

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