By late Sunday evening, either PGA Professional Mike Miller or David Feldman will be planning for a photo that each had hoped would never take place in front of their constituents.
Miller, the mayor of Flowery Branch, Georgia, and Feldman, chairman of the Town of Foxborough, Massachusetts, are the elected leaders of communities that are headquarters of this year’s Super Bowl combatants -- the Atlanta Falcons and the New England Patriots.
The friendly wager, proposed by Miller, is that the losing elected official will wear the jersey of the winning Super Bowl Champions at the next town/city meeting.
Miller, 42, is the PGA Head Professional at Orchard Golf and Country Club in Clarkesville, Georgia. In November 2010, he was elected mayor of Flowery Branch, a town of nearly 7,000 residents. It’s a post he’s been able to balance, he said, thanks to the support of PGA General Manager Randy Brooks and his staff.
Feldman, 50, is in the closing segment of a three-year term as Chairman of Foxborough, a community of 16,700. He is up for re-election in May. Foxborough doesn’t have a City Council, rather a Board of Select Men and a town manager.
“It’s all in good fun,” said Feldman, whose full-time job is vice president of Real Estate and Development for Wingate Healthcare. “It’s less of a bet and more a friendship offering between two communities not that different, but brought together with the common goal to see their team win the Super Bowl.”
Feldman said that what made this wager special was the goodwill was its extension to the two communities Fire Department personnel, who exchanged t-shirts.
This isn’t Miller’s first wager between Flowery Branch and an opposing NFL city. In 2014, the Falcons faced the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship, and Miller arranged a similar wager with the mayor of Santa Clara, California. “We didn’t come out on top then, but I have a good feeling about this year,” said Miller.
Flowery Branch sent a basket to Foxborough’s Board of Select Men, which Miller said contained “goodies to sweeten the taste of bitter defeat as the Falcons rise up and defeat the Patriots.” Community businesses getting in the spirit included Calliope Sweets, Liberty Candy Company, Dirty Birds Coffee from Common Ground Coffee Shoppe; and Wrigley chewing gum.
Depending on the outcome of the game, Chairman Feldman has agreed to send a basket full of New England staples supplied by Foxborough local businesses at Patriot Place, adjacent to Gillette Stadium.
“If the unthinkable happens,” said Feldman, “and the Falcons should win, then Mayor Miller deserves a champion’s basket complete with two dozen handmade spring rolls from Boston based Davios Italian Steakhouse as an appetizer.”
The main course is lobster and clam chowder from Skipjacks, for dessert, cupcakes from Cupcake Charlie's and to wash it down, famous Dunkin Donuts coffee.
“To make sure the Mayor gets a good night’s sleep, we sent one pair of TB12 Under Armour recover sleepwear provided by New England based Olympia sports,” said Feldman. “I know this is a new experience for Mayor Miller but if you want to be the best you have to beat the best so I wish him good luck.”
Feldman went on to add “unfortunately for Mayor Miller I think he will have to settle for wearing Tom Brady’s jersey to find out what it feels like to be a champion.”
Mayor Miller is waiting patiently to provide Chairman Feldman with the jersey of Flowery Branch resident Ricardo Allen, No. 37.