(Jan. 28, 2009)“America’s Sunniest Metropolis” and “America’s Most Livable City” are putting their pride on the line during Super Bowl XLIII.

Visitor-industry officials from the Greater Phoenix Convention & Visitors Bureau and VisitPittsburgh have placed a friendly wager on the outcome of Super Sunday’s clash between the Arizona Cardinals and Pittsburgh Steelers.

One destination will earn bragging rights, while the other will be forced to publicly eat crow at Destination Marketing Association International’s upcoming Destinations Showcase Conference & Expos in Washington, D.C.

Either way, the real winner will be the DMAI Foundation, the charitable arm of the world’s largest association of destination marketing organization

The terms of the “Phoenix-Pittsburgh Destination Challenge” are simple: CVB staff representing the losing Super Bowl team will wear the colors of its conqueror during the Destinations Showcase expo Feb. 26. The “losing” CVB also will sport the enemy’s colors for a photo to be published in USAE News and make a $500 donation to the DMAI Foundation in the winner’s name.

Oddsmakers have installed Pittsburgh as a touchdown favorite in Sunday’s big game, but Kevin Kamenzind, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing at the Greater Phoenix CVB, said he and his coworkers are not discouraged.

“The Cardinals have defied the odds throughout the playoffs, so why stop now?” said Kamenzind, who, it should be noted, grew up and attended college in Pittsburgh.

“I’ve got a black-and-gold ‘Terrible Towel’ somewhere in my office, but I won’t be waving it this week,” Kamenzind said. “In fact, I’m already trying to rustle up some Cardinals jerseys for our friends from Pittsburgh to wear in D.C. I happen to think they’ll look good in red.”

“Not so fast,” says Craig Davis, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for VisitPittsburgh. “The last time the Pittsburgh Steelers were in the Super Bowl, we had another bird – the Seattle Seahawks – eating crow. Go Steelers!”