Craig Melvin and Lindsay Czarniak Call 'Magical' Family Trip to Super Bowl a 'Lifetime Memory'

Craig Melvin and Lindsay Czarniak have both been to Super Bowls before, but tell PEOPLE the big game takes on a whole new life when it's a family outing

Craig Melvin and Lindsay Czarniak Discuss Making 'Lifetime Memory' with Family Trip to Super Bowl
Photo: Courtesy of Craig Melvin and Lindsay Czarniak

Craig Melvin and Lindsay Czarniak celebrated the ultimate family trip with their kids this weekend.

The Today co-anchor, 43, and the FOX Sports newscaster, 45, traveled to Glendale, Arizona and were among the thousands watching on as Rihanna performed and the Kansas City Chiefs took home a Super Bowl win on Sunday.

Speaking with PEOPLE about the whirlwind weeks in Arizona, Melvin explains that the idea of going to the big game was first pitched to them by their 8-year-old son Delano, who shares a love for the Chiefs with his dad and considers Patrick Mahomes among his favorite athletes.

"As they were playing in the AFC Championship game, the conversation started. He's like, 'If they win, can we go to the Super Bowl?' And in the moment, I didn't think about it and I was like, 'Yeah absolutely, let's go.'"

Talking about it, in theory, is one thing, but Melvin says telling Delano and sister Sybil, 6, the trip was officially on was "magical."

"We told him and our daughter at dinner a couple of nights later, after we managed to secure some tickets. It. Yeah, that was magical," the TV personality shares.

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Czarniak says that the fact their kids are "really good travelers" makes planning special occasions like this that much easier.

"We started traveling with them from such an early age," she explains. "Don't get me wrong. There were times that, just like any parent, you're having to deal with like kid stuff at an airport. Your kids are crying, you're upset, and they have their moments. But we have done it enough now that we have our routines, and our kids get really excited about the travel experience. And now is when that's kind of paying off. They love to do it, and they know what to expect, and they've become really little efficient travelers."

Delano also enjoyed some pretty exciting celebrity run-ins, an experience the Nightly News: Kids Edition correspondent is familiar with.

During the NFL experience Saturday, the family of four met the most popular mom of the weekend, Donna Kelce, mom to Chiefs star Travis Kelce and Eagles star Jason Kelce.

"I interviewed her once or twice and to see her in person, and she was excited to meet Delano. She was actually familiar with Delano's interview with her son from a couple months ago, when he sat down with Travis Kelce and Patrick Mahomes. And so we saw her, we actually stood around and talked for about 10 minutes with her and her friends and family as well. So he was pretty excited about that," says Melvin.

Later, in their hotel lobby, the 8-year-old spotted one of his NBA favorites, Kevin Durant.

"You know, Kevin Durant's like 6'10, 6'11, and he walks in and my son is like, 'I think that's KD.' And I said, 'I think you're right.' So he got a Super Bowl ignition encounter with one of his considered basketball players, too."

The family of four had a long day Sunday, with pre-game celebrations leaving the two kids a bit worn down before game time.

"We were a little concerned about them actually, they were exhausted before the game even started. But they were troopers, they were troopers," he says.

For both Melvin and Czarniak, being there with family rather than in an official capacity made the experience extra special.

"First of all, it's awesome just to be there. Anytime you can be a Super Bowl, but to be there and to be able to experience it with my son and now also my daughter, who said that she was just in it for the food, but I'm seeing her turn into a fan," Czarniak tells PEOPLE.

Craig Melvin and Lindsay Czarniak Discuss Making 'Lifetime Memory' with Family Trip to Super Bowl
Courtesy of Craig Melvin and Lindsay Czarniak

"She's been asking me a lot of football questions, which is awesome because I really wasn't trying to push it once I realized that she really wasn't looking like she was interested in it. So, that was really cool, but overall, when you work in it, and you cover it, that's one thing because I love the sport, but it's having an opportunity to be there with the family is really special."

She adds, "And when it's a team that any one of your kids — or anyone in your family, for that matter — roots for, it was like magical."

Another unforgettable moment for the family was watching Rihanna's halftime show — where the singer revealed she's expecting her second baby.

Czarniak joked that Sybil "was asking me to stop singing because we were jamming out to it."

"We thought it was awesome. I mean, from the beginning, how the platform she was on moved up so high, we loved that and the dancing and the music. We thought it was so cool, and she just owned it."

The medley also revealed that Sybil is quite the Rihanna fan. "My daughter was in it, from start to finish, because every song that came on, she's singing. I didn't even realize that she knew all of those songs, but there were certain songs that came on, and she's like, 'Oh I love this one.' And that was really cool, too, right? Because it's like you learn things about them every day."

All the special moments in the evening built up to the Chiefs' win, which was unlike anything the family of four could have expected.

"The lasting image, for me, will be the confetti raining down and just watching my son be so happy and also my daughter just getting into it, because they're only at that age once, and so to have this kind of experience with them, it's just awesome," Czarniak shares.

"It was not lost on me how special of an opportunity it was for my kids and my husband. But all of us together, to be able to see that and have it be the team that you root for, their colors raining down. That was just really, really special."

Melvin sees it as a "lifetime memory" that he'll share with his whole family but also, as something special between him and Delano.

"I'm ecstatic that we were able to share it together. I'd never got the chance to go to the Super Bowl with my dad. So hopefully, this is something that he'll share with his kids, maybe his grandkids, one day, the time he got to see his favorite player on his favorite team, in a Super Bowl in Arizona with his dad, and his mom and his little sister."

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