NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. — “The biggest thing I’m thankful for is the weather.”
–That’s how one woman describes the first thing she saw while walking through her suburban New Jersey neighborhood.
It was January 1, the day after the historic New England Patriots defeated the Carolina Panthers 24-17 in Super Bowl LI.
It wasn’t the first time she had seen the city from a different perspective.
As a child, her mother and father were immigrants from Pakistan who had moved to New Jersey.
They moved to Boston, and when she was young, they went to church every Sunday.
“It was kind of a rite of passage, to go through the city with them,” she said.
“I grew up in a small town, so when I was little, I saw a lot of history and a lot about Boston.”
For the last four years, the woman who lives in this small town of 2,400 has been working to bring more attention to the history of the Boston Patriots and the people who live and work in the city.
“We want to change the story of Boston,” said Jennifer Williams, a member of the Greater Boston Committee of the National Committee for Boston Patriots.
Williams has been spearheading efforts to highlight the history and culture of Boston.
In recent months, she’s been working with several organizations, including the Massachusetts Historical Society and the Boston Public Library to put together a list of the Patriots’ pasts.
Williams said the group is working to organize a “big bang” event in Boston next month to commemorate the team’s Super Bowl victory.
“What you’ll see will be a whole new era in Boston.
It’s going to be a celebration, not just of the city of Boston but of the entire nation,” she told CBC News.
Williams is also looking to get a copy of the new Patriots’ game DVD, which will be released next month.
“A lot of people who aren’t familiar with the history have been taken for granted,” she explained.
“If we can make it a little more accessible, maybe people can get a little bit more understanding.”
Williams said she hopes to raise enough money to make a movie about the team, as well as bring the game DVD to Boston.
“The bigger the game, the bigger the movie,” she added.
“And hopefully, the better it is.”
It was just the beginning of a whirlwind for Williams.
As part of her outreach, she was also involved in the creation of a “Big Bang Boston” Facebook group that now has over 5,000 members.
She also recently started a website to celebrate the history behind the Patriots.
She’s also started a crowdfunding campaign to pay for a new Patriots fan guide book.
And on Thursday, Williams took part in a Boston Celtics game at Fenway Park to celebrate a victory over the Philadelphia Eagles.
“That’s kind of where I got the idea for this project, and I think it’s something that we could all really benefit from,” she concluded.
“Hopefully, people can come and support this project.
Hopefully it can help to spread the message that the Patriots are here.”