Touchdowns and Traditions

Students and staff look back on past Super Bowl celebrations ahead of Super Bowl LVII


You pile your plate with chips, dip, pizza, and endless snacks. Picking up a can of Mountain Dew, you walk into your living room just in time to hear cheers erupting from your family– your team has just scored a touchdown. Meanwhile, your younger sister is sitting in the other room, waiting for the next commercial break and, more importantly, the halftime show. 

This atmosphere could only be used to describe the Big Game, the Championship of Commercials, and Nacho Appreciation Day– otherwise known as the Super Bowl.

With the Super Bowl coming up on February 12, it’s time to get excited for the Big Game and start preparing for Super Bowl traditions. Senior Carmella Chavez is one student looking forward to celebrating the Super Bowl once again.

“Football is kind of our [family’s] life, so I’d say the Super Bowl is pretty important to all of us. My mom’s really big into the halftime performance, but me, my brother, and my dad, we always really get into it,” Chavez said.

Every year, Chavez and her family watch the Super Bowl– they even have three different screens to play it on. With the big game being such a big deal for Chavez’s family, they have matched the occasion with an equally huge part of Super Bowl Sunday– hosting parties.

“The past couple of years we have done more parties. A couple of years ago we did a huge party where we had a whole pool of who would win the Super Bowl, and I was in charge of keeping track of who would win the pool, so that was really fun. But a lot of times we like to have a lot of people over,” Chavez said.

Science teacher Tyler Pearson also enjoys watching the Super Bowl with his family every year. One special Super Bowl activity Pearson has participated in with his family is “prop bets.”

“[Prop bets are bets on] who’s gonna get hit, heads or tails in the coin flip, who’s gonna score the first point, how long will the National Anthem be, will there be a wardrobe malfunction at the halftime show– legitimately you can bet on that– will there be a pass over 80 yards for a touchdown; there are some really interesting ones,” Pearson said. 

While Pearson tried out prop bets for only one year, science teacher David McEnaney has turned them into a tradition, held when he goes to his in-laws’ house every year to watch the game with his family.

“We have done [prop bets] with all of the kids every year… We loved it. It’s so much fun, the kids get so into it,” McEnaney said. 

McEnaney’s family does not bet money on the prop bets, but every year, they pass around a trophy, along with bragging rights, to the winner of the bets. But beyond friendly competition between family members, there are many other reasons to enjoy watching the game. For McEnaney, it also provides a fun way to spend time with loved ones, especially as the kids in the family grow older.

“I think it’s been so much more fun now that the kids are getting old enough to participate. Bragging rights between us aunts and uncles, some of the older people, was always fun. But now that the kids are really getting involved with it, it’s something that they look forward to. We watch football religiously at my house anyway, so it’s just another excuse to get everybody together,” McEnaney said. 

Chavez, on the other hand, loves watching certain aspects of the game itself, such as the halftime show and the initial kickoff. This year, she is hoping to see an exciting, close game.

“Honestly, I want to see how they call penalties this year; I wonder how that’s going to go. I’m really hoping to see a couple of challenges because that’s such a cool part of it when the coach challenges a play that [the referees] give. I really want it to come down to the wire; I don’t want it to be a blowout,” Chavez said. 

Hanging out with friends and family and watching the game are both integral parts of the Super Bowl experience– but what is the Super Bowl without the essential tradition of snacks each year?

“Every year, my dad actually cooks and he makes a cheese dip, and then he does either burgers or ribs– we always barbecue,” Chavez said. 

For Pearson, eating a special snack combination is his family’s biggest tradition– he and his son always purchase what Pearson calls “dude snacks” for the Super Bowl. 

“Dude snacks [are] a combination of either Chili Cheese Fritos or Frito Scoops, the Frito-Lay Bean Dip, and the Frito-Lay Jalapeño Cheese Dip. You just scoop, you put the Bean Dip in, and you dip it into the cheese, and then you eat it. That’s our big tradition,” Pearson said. 

After replaying student and staff Super Bowl traditions and memories, the call has been made: beyond the snacks, the commercials, and the party logistics, watching the Super Bowl is ultimately a yearly tradition of great importance. It brings friends and family together, helping to make memories that will last a lifetime.