Kilauea couple Vegas bound

LIHUE — Life can be a funny thing.

Kilauea resident Chris Cullen was recently talking to a buddy of his who’s going to be in Las Vegas over Super Bowl weekend. The conversation got the wheels turning in the father of two’s head.

“I’ve been telling my wife, ‘I want to go. I really want to go,’” Cullen said. “And my wife’s like, ‘No, you’re not going.’”

Despite his wife putting her foot down, Cullen will get his wish. However, it won’t be over Super Bowl weekend with his friend. It will be with his wife — for free.

Cullen is the grand prize winner of The Garden Island’s annual Football Fever contest. His name was drawn Jan. 14 from 2,937 total entries for an all-expenses-paid trip for two to Las Vegas. The prize includes airfare, lodging, food and $500 spending cash.

The Atlanta native has won prizes before, but nothing like this. Upon first receiving the call, Cullen said he was hesitant to believe it.

“I wanted to make sure everything sounded legit before I got excited about it,” he said.

After being given time to let his win sink in, Cullen described it as “awesome.” 

“I think this is going to be a nice little vacation for me and my wife,” he said. “I don’t think we’ve ever had a break from our girls … except for maybe like a night out.”

Cullen said it’s been about eight years since he’s been to Vegas — “the whole family thing kind of changes things a bit” — but his favorite table games include poker, craps and roulette. And with any luck, he hopes to turn the $500 spending cash into even more.

Also on the agenda is Cirque du Soleil. 

“The last time we went, which was a long time ago, we wanted to see the ‘Love’ show, the Beatles thing. We never got to see it. So I think that’s on the list,” he said. 

This year, TGI’s popular Football Fever ran for 18 weeks, with a $250 winner each week. 

Weekly sponsors included PS&D/Napa Auto Parts, Bull Shed Restaurant, Bradley Maruyama – All State Insurance, Delivery Kauai, Kauai Government Employee Federal Credit Union, King Auto Center, Oceanic Time Warner Cable, Poipu Bay Golf Course, Salty Wahine and Puakea Golf Course.

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