Credits: Jack Boland / Toronto Sun / QMI Agency
TORONTO — Game on — and party on.
The Super Bowl is one of the most-watched television events in Canada, whether the game is being viewed in a bar or a living room.
More than 8 million Canadians tuned into the game last year compared to the 6.5 million who watched the Academy awards, statistics provided by NFL Canada show.
“Canadians have been exposed to the game for a long time and it has been on TV since the ‘60s. There are Canadians who play in the NFL and the championship game is very popular,” said Dan Quinn, managing director of NFL Canada, who wouldn’t give a prediction whether the San Francisco 49ers or the Baltimore Ravens would take Super Bowl XLVII in New Orleans on Sunday.
“I have no idea who will win. I just look for an entertaining game. I love games that are close to the end, so hopefully it will be a good game. The Super Bowl is a social experience where you get together with friends. It is about traditions, meeting with the same people for years rotating from different houses. It is the second biggest party of the year after New Year’s Eve.”
The NFL will be holding Super Bowl parties in Montreal, Vancouver and in Toronto.
In Toronto, for example, fans will get a personal welcome from official Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders who will also perform, and get a chance to meet and take photos with former Buffalo Bills great Bruce Smith and former Tennessee Titans and Philadelphia Eagles star Jevon Kearse.
Canadian NFL fans religiously tune in to games but they are divided when it comes to picking their favorite team.
NFL Canada has listed the favorites from their hosting cities.
Toronto - Pittsburgh Steelers
Vancouver - Seattle Seahawks
Quebec City - Minnesota Vikings
Ottawa - New England Patriots
Calgary - Seattle Seahawks
Winnipeg - Minnesota Vikings