CHICAGO — Monday night football will never be the same for dozens of Chicago kids after they got the chance to step on to Soldier Field during the annual “Mum Bowl” this week.
The teams of 12-year-olds arrived on two buses from different sides of town before walking through the same tunnel the Bears use to make their way onto the grass at Solider Field.
As the two top teams in the Chicago Park District, the Lindblom Park Ravens and La Follette Park Wildcats earned the honor of playing on the hallowed ground in the 70th annual championship of the Junior Bear Football league. The game is backed by the Bears franchise, which covers all the gear, games, transportation and tickets.
“The Bears have been with us every step of the way, supporting Junior Bear Football,” Chicago Park District CEO Michael Kelly said.
As the clock ticked down, the Wildcats from the Austin neighborhood held their ground, and the title.
“I feel so good! I feel like I’m a Bear!” 12-year-old Wildcat Aaron Green said.
For these players and their families, it’s likely the best Monday night football game they’ll see all year.