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February 10, 2023

Gov. Shapiro, Mayor Kenney wager with Missouri officials ahead of Super Bowl

District Attorney Larry Krasner also placed a bet against Jackson County's top prosecutor in the spirit of friendly competition

Government Super Bowl
Eagles Super Bowl Bets Colleen Claggett/PhillyVoice

Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney, District Attorney Larry Krasner and Pennsylvania Gov. Josh Shapiro have placed friendly bets against officials in Kansas City, Missouri ahead of Super Bowl LVII on Sunday, Feb. 12, when the Eagles will take on the Chiefs for a chance at the Lombardi Trophy.

We are just two days away from Super Bowl LVII, when the Philadelphia Eagles will take on the Kansas City Chiefs for a chance at the biggest title in the NFL. As the city prepares for a full weekend of celebration, some state and local officials are getting in on the action, wagering on the outcome of the big game in the hopes that the Eagles will bring home the Lombardi Trophy. 

The tradition of mayors and governors placing friendly bets is as old as the Super Bowl itself. A week before the first-ever Super Bowl in 1967, the former mayor of Green Bay, Wisconsin, Donald A. Tilleman, sent a telegram to former Kansas City Mayor Ilus W. Davis, betting him a block of Wisconsin cheese that the Packers would win. Since then, it has become "obligatory" for officials to wager against each other in good faith when their team is in a major sporting event, the Washington Post reported.

Mayor Jim Kenney is no stranger to sports bets. In 2018, Kenney wagered on the outcome of Super Bowl LII with the former mayor of Brockton, Massachusetts, Bill Carpenter. When the Birds won against the New England Patriots, Brockton's statue of boxer Rocky Marciano donned an Eagles jersey. Carpenter also sent Kenney some Rocky Marciano wine. 

On Thursday, Kenney accepted yet another Super Bowl challenge, this time from Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas. In a video posted to Twitter on Wednesday, Lucas offered to send some of Kansas City's culinary staples to Philly if the Chiefs lose on Sunday. 

He wagered food from Gate's Barbecue, a Kansas City institution since 1946, along with shirts from Charlie Hustle Co. and coffee from The Roasterie as part of the challenge. 

Kenney accepted the challenge, offering up a handful of Philly favorites to send to Kansas City if the Eagles lose the big game. His wager includes a large pie from Down North Pizza and a six-pack from Philadelphia Brewing Co. But if the Eagles win, the Kansas City must also make a donation to MANNA, a nonprofit organization that provides nutritious meals to sick residents around the Philly region. 

Gov. Josh Shapiro, who spent the earliest days of his political career in Montgomery County, is headed to State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona with his wife Lori to cheer on the Birds during the Super Bowl on Sunday. 

Before the game, Shapiro plans to meet with Missouri Gov. Mike Parson and Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly to talk trash and ensure that both state officials are willing to uphold their ends of the bet he wagered on Thursday. 

"Like millions of Pennsylvanians, Lori and I are excited to cheer on the Philadelphia Eagles and watch them bring the Lombardi Trophy back to the Commonwealth," Shapiro said. "Pennsylvania is home to the greatest small businesses in the country — and while I love to share the best Pennsylvania has to offer with my friends in other states, the Eagles have been so good this season that I'm willing to double down on a win this week. Go Birds!" 

As part of the wager, Shapiro has bet an assortment of food from Pennsylvania businesses — cheesesteaks from Tony Luke's, Eagles mini-donuts from Collegeville Italian Bakery in Montgomery County and soft pretzels from Philly Style Hand Twisted Soft Pretzel Bakery in Levittown. 

In exchange, Kelly has wagered Creekstone Farms Angus Beef and chocolate-covered sunflower seeds. Parson joined in on the fun as well, revealing on Twitter that he and Shapiro will exchange autographed Eagles and Chiefs flags, and the loser will hang the winning team's flag in the state Capitol building once the Super Bowl is over. 

On Friday, District Attorney Larry Krasner responded to a Super Bowl challenge from Jackson County District Attorney Jean Peters Baker and Wyandotte County District Attorney Mark A. Dupree. Each have agreed to provide signature items from local Black-owned businesses to the winning team's prosecutor's office after the game. 

"Philadelphia is the home of the Declaration of Independence, the Rocky statue, and the best starting quarterback in the NFL, Jalen Hurts," Krasner said in a release. "On a scale of one to 10, I feel (great) about the Eagles' chances against Kansas City — with the caveat that any team led by former Eagles head coach Andy Reid will be a formidable and worthy opponent." 

In addition, the prosecutor representing the losing team will be required to wear the logo of the winning team at a community event within one month of the Super Bowl, according to the District Attorney's Office.