I truly cannot believe this happened – I’ll start at the beginning. I didn’t sleep real well Saturday night. We were at a two-star motel in Fond Du Lac. That’s about halfway to Green Bay…prices were cheaper there then in either Madison or Green Bay. I was still charged up from the Badger game Saturday PM – plus we had a couple thundershowers overnight and when I wake up to thunder, I instantly run to the window and then the computer to see what’s happening.
We got up early…got downstairs for breakfast…no one knows me here, so I just combed my hair and put on the same clothes I wore to the game Saturday. It was pouring rain. I watched the local weather…more rain, flooding, cloudy, etc. At least it wasn’t real cold. We got back upstairs, jumped thru the shower than tried to decide what to wear. We didn’t know where we were going to wind up….so I put on a clean t-shirt and the same Wisconsin red sweatshirt, which did me well in the rain in the U.P. a few years ago.
We headed toward Green Bay in the rain. My first choice to snag a couple of tickets to the Packer game…second, to just get to the Packer Pro Shop and buy something for my daughter #2 – a Packer fan. Plan three (and honestly, the one I thought we’d end up doing) was to find some happy place to watch the game – sports bar maybe. The first slowdown we had on the highway was 20 miles south of Green Bay. It was slow going and we didn’t get the car parked until 11:45 am (game started at noon CDT). We parked on the street for free (yippee!) about a mile away from Lambeau Field. It was sprinkling, but not a heavy rain.
We got to Lambeau in time to hear the National Anthem from the parking lot. I asked a security guy about tickets. He said i just missed the scalpers – they had sold out and gone inside. Now what? – there were several ticket windows with lines…one for special requests had no one in line…so I walked up and said I didn’t have tickets and I’d REALLY like to see the game and I’d REALLY like to sit with my wife, instead of having two individual seats in different zip codes. He left to go talk to a lady off to the side. The guy comes back and says…we just got two tickets “turned in” (the owner wasn’t going to use them). He said he had to charge me the going rate and they were in section 119 – I had no idea where section 119 was, but because he brought that up…I thought we’d be in the upper-upper deck in the south end zone. It’s so high up there that you need a pilot’s license to sit there (just kidding). You can wave to the pilot in the blimp.
So, I get the tickets – then I stand in a fairly long line going thru the metal detectors and while I’m waiting, the Packers score a touchdown. We get to see it because there’s a big monitor outside.
We walk around inside until we find section 119. I came out of the tunnel and it was like getting a pick-six!! LOOK WHERE WE ARE! We’re about 1/3rd of the way up in the lower deck. Gayle is on the 50-year line, I’m sitting on the 49-yard line! The guy next to Gayle is rooting for the Broncos – he’s Peyton Manning’s neighbor! The young lady behind us was from Alaska, played on the Wisconsin hockey team and was now in medical sales in L.A. She flew in for the game. The guy next to me knew everything about every player on both teams. The couple next to him had to have been big-time athletes…they just had that look.
We had a few periods of rain and drizzle. I had a really cheap plastic poncho – the kind that fits in your pocket.
The Packers had 6 sacks, the Broncos none…the Packers had no turnovers, the Broncos had 3. The Broncos have now lost 7 regular season games in a row going back to early December 2018. There were some great plays in the game…you can watch highlights at this link.
I took this pic. with my phone. This shows how close we were and that we were right there by the 50-yard line. The Packers wore their “3rd jerseys” – a throwback to the blue uniforms they wore from 1937-48.
Going to a Packer game can be an all-day affair. The parking lot opened at 8 am, as did the tailgating. The stadium opened at 10 am. Several Packer alumni are often there to greet people coming in. As the game started, there was a flyover of Navy jets.
During halftime, the Oneida Nation Pow Wow and Smoke Dancers performed on the field. Here’s some video of the dancing. They also had the high school quarterback challenge finals. The Packers were one of the first teams to have cheerleaders in 1931. In 1988, then decided to feature local college cheerleaders from U.W. Green Bay and St. Norbert’s College.
My wife had a great time at the game. Note the Whitecaps hat!
This was the end of the game…a few fireworks and flares. Note that almost no one left…I’ll bet +95% of the crowd was still there for the end of the game. Lots of players remained to chat with the opposing team.
The Packer Pro Shop is amazing. At one end of the store, they had 25 checkouts going…the place is HUGE and it has everything Packer…The “pro shop” began in 1989 in a small 17 ft. x 17 ft. room. It’s now 21,500 square feet and you can buy Packer golf bags, Packer garbage bins, Packer everything. When we were there, there was a waiting line to get in. Everyone was very friendly there…it was a great experience.
Here’s one more look at Lambeau Field as we leaving…we went through the downtown, then east toward our evening destination, Algoma.
On the way, we stopped at the town of Luxemborg. My father was 100% Luexembourger. His parents came from the towns of Bisschen and Vichten. Pretty much everything in the small town was closed on a Sunday evening. There was a lot of standing water from the rain they have had. Green Bay is more than 14″ above average for the year and possibly heading toward a year with record precipitation.
We stopped a grocery store and found Old Orchard juice from Sparta, Michigan. We also saw Old Orchard juice once in a supermarket where my mother lives in Oak Ridge TN. It’ll keep for awhile, so we bought one of each kind.
We landed for the night at a bed and breakfast on Lake Michigan in Algoma, Wisconsin. Very nice…though the mosquitoes chased us back inside – calm winds…lots of standing water around here for mosquitoes to breed. Great view out the back door…we can hear the waves this evening. Tomorrow we head up into Door County. It’s been another awesome day!