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The Super Bowl Gospel Celebration To Take Over New Orleans To Kick Off Super Bowl Weekend

NEW ORLEANS, Jan. 30, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The Super Bowl Gospel Celebration, currently in its 14 th year, joins together NFL players, Grammy Award-winning artists, and special guests, on one stage to kick-off Super Bowl Weekend. The show, sponsored by Toyota and American Family Insurance, will take place on February 1, 2013 at 7:30 PM, at the University of New Orleans, Lakefront Arena.

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Emmy Award-winning co-host of ABC's "The View," Sherri Shepherd and seven-time Grammy Award-winning gospel musician, Kirk Franklin, will host the musical celebration. Grammy Award-winning, platinum-selling artist and American Idol winner Fantasia will headline the show, which will include performances by top gospel and contemporary Christian artists Donnie McClurkin, Marvin Winans, Bishop Paul S. Morton, and this year's NFL "Players' Choice" hip-hop Christian artist Lecrae.

"We founded this event to bring even more power and celebration to one of the biggest events of the year – the Super Bowl," says Melanie Few-Harrison, Creator & Producer of Super Bowl Gospel Celebration. "Each year we aim to make the Super Bowl Gospel Celebration bigger than the last with artists and special guests from all backgrounds. Given the rich musical history and culture of New Orleans and a powerful line-up of talent, this year's concert will be sure to kick off Super Bowl Weekend."

"The Super Bowl Gospel Celebration has been a formal sanctioned partner for over a decade, and has played an integral role in bringing together fans and football players under one roof with a shared love of inspirational music," said Tisha Ford, NFL Director of Events Business Development.

The highlight of the Super Bowl Gospel Celebration is the NFL Players Choir. Composed exclusively of current and former players, the choir has become one of the most anticipated performances during Super Bowl Weekend. Celebrating its six-year anniversary, the NFL Players Choir includes more than 40 members, including Hall Of Famers and Pro Bowlers, under the direction of Donnie McClurkin, who will reprise his role this year joined by Myron Butler. Several Christian NFL players who wanted to share their faith through their musical talents in song formed the Choir. The group offers fans an opportunity to see a very personal side of the players off the field, as they make joyful noise.

As the first and only gospel concert sanctioned by the National Football League (NFL), it is the only place you will see the NFL Players Choir. The celebration is the only inspirational music concert that has aired on ESPN, and has been named by USA Today as "One of the Best Super Bowl Events to Attend." Since its inception in 1999, the Super Bowl Gospel Celebration has donated a portion of its proceeds and more than 4,000 tickets to local and national charities. This year's benefactors include the Malcolm Jenkins Foundation, founded by Malcolm Jenkins of the New Orleans Saints, and The Sharper Kids Foundation, founded by Darren Sharper formerly of the New Orleans Saints and his brother former Seattle Seahawk Jamie Sharper.

ABOUT: The Super Bowl Gospel Celebration was launched in Miami in 1999 during Super Bowl XXXIII weekend.  In 2002, the event became the first, and remains the only concert sanctioned by the National Football League (NFL). The show has drawn crowds in the thousands and has demonstrated growth year-after-year, selling out venues in major Super Bowl host cities including Dallas, Tampa, Detroit, Jacksonville, Houston and Phoenix.

About American Family Insurance:

Based in Madison, Wisconsin, American Family Insurance offers auto , homeowners , life, health, business and farm/ranch insurance in 19 states and is the nation's third-largest mutual property/casualty insurance company and ranks 382nd on the Fortune 500 list and. For more information visit: , www., www. , and

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