By Gloria Burns….
Are you ready for some footBAWL? ‘Tis the season for all those great bowl games, tailgating and New Year’s parties, too. While many ‘Canes will travel to El Paso for the Hyundai Sun Bowl December 31, against Notre Dame, FIU in its first post-season match ever meets Toledo in the Little Caesar’s Pizza Bowl, Detroit, Michigan, December 26. Congratulations to Mario Cristobal and team on their first conference win and bowl appearance. My beloved Gators take on Penn State in Tampa’s Outback Bowl January 1, sadly Urban Meyer’s last game as head coach but good news for the Outback backers with tickets expected to sell out as Gator fans say goodbye to a much-loved coach.
While these games promise to be exciting, the Discover Orange Bowl match-up offers some terrific talent on the field when Stanford meets Virginia Tech on January 3 at 8:30 p.m. (Great tickets still available, too). In fact, at a recent speaking engagement at the Coral Gables Chamber, Orange Bowl Executive Director Eric Poms stated that those who buy now are guaranteed those seats for future years, noting the BCS championship will be back in Miami before you know it. Big crowds at these games are important as the BCS sites will be revisited in 2014 and other cities are hoping to get a chance at the Bowl Championship Series.
South Miami Senior High School and Stanford University’s Marching Bands will be among the many local and out-of-state aggregations tootling along with floats, dancers, and other units entertaining Junior Orange Bowl Parade crowds. It’s back to daytime parading this year so join the fun Sunday, January 2, beginning at 4 p.m. in downtown Coral Gables. For grandstand tickets, tel. 305-662-1210.
In the spirit of the season, the Miami Dolphins teamed up with FeedingSouth Florida™ (formerly the Daily Bread Food Bank) by holding two food drives to fight hunger at the December 19 and 26 games. Kudos to the Dolphins and all other organizations and businesses pitching in to help the less fortunate in hard times for so many. Speaking of the Dolphins, fans who recall the 1972 “Perfect Season” will want to visit Jungle Island on January 12 for a roast and tribute honoring Manny Fernandez.
The fund raising event benefits The Touchdown Club’s charitable foundation, Operation Scholarship, and other charitable activities. Co-chairs are Dick Anderson, also a perfect season star along with one of this writer’s favorite Gators and former Dolphin receiver, Nat Moore. Touchdown Club President John Steinbauer promises a great event with guests flying in to attend, including NFL Hall of Famer La r ry Csonka, fullback companion of running back Jim Kiick, the team’s Butch Cassidy and Sundance Kid duo.
Look for Lar ry Little, another Hall of Famer, on the dais to roast friend, Manny.
The fun starts with cocktails at 7 p.m. with tickets at $100 per person. Those wanting to sit with one of the numerous celebrities may do so with a table sponsorship starting at $2,500. For more information, contact John R. Steinbauer at John@steinbauer.com, tel. 305- 477- 1815 or go online to www. mannyroast.com.
Until next time, keep making each day count.
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