Make-A-Wish Celebrates 40 Years of Wishes to Go to the Super Bowl

More than 300 wishes have been granted at the Super Bowl since 1982, including 15 wishes this year

Make-A-Wish will be sending a team of 15 wish kids and their families to Los Angeles to attend Super Bowl LVI. The kids, who are all facing critical illnesses, will be treated to a life-changing experience thanks to the generous donations of individuals and corporate supporters, including the National Football League (NFL). In addition to celebrating a return of wish kids to the Super Bowl after a one-year hiatus, Make-A-Wish will be celebrating 40 years of partnership with the NFL, starting with the first wish to go to the Super Bowl in 1982.

The wish kids will arrive in Southern California on Wednesday, Feb. 9. The following evening, they will get the chance to strut their stuff on the red carpet as VIP guests at the NFL Honors event. In the days following, they will receive a private, behind-the-scenes tour of SoFi Stadium and have free time to explore the fun and games at the Super Bowl Experience. Most importantly, the wish kids will be in the stadium to watch as the Los Angeles Rams and Cincinnati Bengals go head-to-head in pursuit of the coveted Vince Lombardi Trophy on Sunday, Feb. 13.

“After the trauma and stress that these families have had to endure, we can’t wait to provide them with an experience that we know will continue to bring them hope and joy long after the confetti falls at the end of the game,” said Richard K. Davis, president and CEO of Make-A-Wish America. “These wishes wouldn’t be possible without the ongoing support from the NFL, and we are so grateful that after four decades, the NFL – starting at the top with Commissioner Roger Goodell – continues to be one of our most committed and passionate wish granting partners.”

Wishes involving the NFL started shortly after the founding of Make-A-Wish in 1980. The first wish that the NFL granted was for John Paul Serna, a 12-year-old Arizona boy who attended Super Bowl XVI in 1982. The wish was the 9th ever in Make-A-Wish history, and in the 40 years since, more than 300 wishes have been granted at the Super Bowl with hundreds more wishes having been granted through the 32 teams and their players.

Make-A-Wish creates life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses. Headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona, Make-A-Wish is the world’s leading children’s wish-granting organization, operating in every community in the United States and in nearly 50 countries worldwide. Together with generous donors, supporters, staff and more than 24,000 volunteers across the U.S., Make-A-Wish delivers hope and joy to children and their families when they need it most. Make-A-Wish aims to bring the power of wishing to every child with a critical illness because wish experiences can help improve emotional and physical health. Since 1980, Make-A-Wish has granted more than 520,000 wishes worldwide; more than 350,000 wishes in the U.S. and its territories alone.

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