Colonial Williamsburg to Air Commercial During Super Bowl

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Colonial Williamsburg's first-ever Super Bowl ad, narrated by Tom Brokaw, will feature a series of iconic images from throughout American History. (Courtesy Colonial Williamsburg Foundation)
Colonial Williamsburg’s first Super Bowl ad, narrated by Tom Brokaw, will feature a series of iconic images from throughout American History. (Courtesy Colonial Williamsburg Foundation)

Sunday may be the NFL’s 50th Super Bowl, but it marks an important first for Colonial Williamsburg: The living history museum will run an ad during the big game.

Colonial Williamsburg’s first Super Bowl commercial will be narrated by former NBC Nightly News anchor Tom Brokaw and will air in the New York, Philadelphia and Washington D.C. markets as part of a targeted initiative to attract tourism from those areas.

Though Historic Triangle locals will not be able to see the ad on their big screen TVs Sunday, both the TV cut and an extended 60-second version are available to view on Colonial Williamsburg’s website now.

The content of the 30-second spot, which was produced by Texas-based Firehouse ad agency, is based around Colonial Williamsburg’s ongoing efforts to draw parallels between history and current events. It will feature “emotional images of presidents, innovators, accomplishments and seminal events, as well as a thought-provoking depiction of the World Trade Center rising from the ashes of Ground Zero,” according to a recent news release.

Brokaw will narrate over a montage of formative moments and iconic images in American history being presented in reverse and touching on themes central to the nation’s character, such as courage, resilience and perseverance, the release states.

The commercial will close with Brokaw asking the viewing audience to consider where these quintessentially American characteristics come from, followed by a black screen and the phrase “It started here.”

“The ad is meant to show that the America we know was not inevitable. It took courage. It took leadership. It took pain and sacrifice,” said Mitchell B. Reiss, president and CEO of Colonial Williamsburg. “Race relations, the immigration debate and the current political climate can be traced back to the earliest hours of our nation’s founding, when Williamsburg was a crucible of revolutionary debate and activity.”