VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY)- Thomas Brown is just like most of his 4th grade classmates at Norfolk Christian Elementary school. He plays football, is a competitive swimmer and he loves to read. But get this, one of his favorite magazines led him to the chance of a lifetime. “I’m a Boy Scout currently ranked as a Webelo and I get this magazine called Boys Life. On the back of it there was some advertizing for the contest.”
That would be the NFL Play 60 Super Bowl contest. The campaign encourages young kids to stay active. To be eligible for the contest Brown pledged to be active for 60 minutes a day and answer three questions about eating right and staying active.
Brown’s entry was selected from thousands of others and he was chosen as the grand prize winner which came as a surprise to Brown. “I knew from the start that I was going to win. I prayed about it and god helped me win.”
Brown and his family will spend this week in New York as VIP guests of the NFL. He has a host of duties, and the biggest one will be to deliver the game ball to the referee moments before the start of Super Bowl XLVIII. Not bad for a kid who has never even been to an NFL game before. “There’s going to 100,000 fans screaming when I walk onto the field. I’m going to hand the ball of the ref and they are still going to be screaming.”
Brown is an avid Pittsburgh Steelers fan and his favorite player is Steelers safety Troy Polamalu. Last week his father and the NFL gave him a big surprise by taking him to Pittsburgh where he met team owner Art Rooney Jr. and even had dinner with his favorite player.
Brown gave Polamalu a little advice. “That he should not cut his hair. Because his hair gives him power. My brother calls him the modern day Sampson.”
The NFL Play 60 campaign is currently in its 7th year. Brown may be the biggest winner of this contest, but all kids can benefit from playing 60 minutes a day.