In Baltimore, even Santa, it seems, is a Ravens fan. And vice versa.
At 60, Bo Fowler can pass for Santa, and the Owings Mills resident has begun dressing in a custom purple Ravens Santa suit and entertaining at players' charitable holiday events.
Fowler made his first appearance as Santa last year at a Petco store. After chatting with Ravens players at live radio broadcasts, he began receiving requests to appear at Ravens charity events.
"I'd take pictures of the players and bring them copies," said the self-styled "Purple Santa," who has become friendly with current and former players
Fowler played Santa at
"I enjoy doing it for the kids and the players," Fowler said. "Especially when I see the look on kids' faces when they see the players talking to Santa. The players feed off of it."
When he's not taking holiday requests, Fowler represents the Ravens in other ways.
"My dad wears a Ravens shirt every single day during football season and is always positive about the Ravens no matter if they win or lose," said his daughter, Erin Fowler.
Purple Santa shared some of his thoughts on fandom with The Baltimore Sun.
Where did you find the purple Ravens Santa suit?
A friend of mine is a tailor. When I started getting requests from players to play Santa, I asked my friend about doing purple. I drew up the design for it — with S. Claus and No. 25 on the back.
What makes you so passionate about these events?
The players get moved from their home to play in Baltimore. They start a charity for Maryland to help families. I live here, so why can't I give back?
Who was your favorite Ravens player to meet?
It's a tossup between Lardarius Webb,
Did you learn anything about Ravens players off the field?
I was around in the
Are your daughter and wife big Ravens fans like you?
My daughter Erin is as big a fan as I am. My wife, Toni, usually works on Sundays. Toni had surgery a year ago, and Lardarius Webb and