A Look Inside: Lambeau Game Day
EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) - “It’s what we live for, you know, that’s our goal every year to get to the Super Bowl.”
Whether it’s jerseys, t-shirts, footballs, or pictures of Green Bay legends, you can find it all at the Packers Pro Shop inside Lambeau Field. The Packers indeed are the NFL’s smallest-market team, yet have the most rabid fan base. Green Bay legendary coach Vince Lombardi’s famous quote, ‘Winning isn’t everything, it’s the only thing’ rings throughout the organization.
Peggy Prebelski, Packers Pro Shop Director of Retail Operations says, “We are all devoted to excellence, whether it’s excellence on the field or excellence in the retail business that’s our goal. Fans are just excited to get back out after being shutdown last year and they are having so much fun and we’ve haven’t seen crowds quite like this.”
A trip to Lambeau Field will always be on the bucket list for any football fan. Adding the 300-million dollar Titletown District development just west of the stadium offers a must-see year-round destination for families.
Packers Director of Public Affairs Aaron Popkey says the district is yet another reason to come to Green Bay, “Titletown so far is everything we hoped it would be. It’s allowing us to create a mini neighborhood. We wanted to compliment all the other things that are going on in Greater Green Bay.”
On game day, Titletown is bustling with fans enjoying the outdoor entertainment and restaurants. Nighttime brings a transformation to a Hallmark Card Winter Wonderland with spectacular light displays.
“During the winter, Titletown turns into the best winter destination. So we have tubing down Ahrens Hill and we have ice skating offered on our ice rink. And just all the lights that are around really makes it a place that people want to come to during the winter,” says Jackie Krutz, Manager of Titletown Residential and Programs.
The Packers have been a publicly owned, non-profit corporation since 1923. There was approximately 361,000 stockholders following the fifth stock sale in 2011, a sixth stock sale got underway in November, shares going for 300 bucks.
“If all the shares are sold by February 25th, that’s when the sale will end, the Packers say they will raise 90-million dollars. That money will go toward $250 million dollars in Lambeau Field projects including concession stand renovations and new digital, video scoreboards.”
“We’re in the midst of our sixth stock sale right now, we’re over 55-million that’s been raised which is awesome because that helps us invest further in the stadium. And as all our fans know Lambeau Field is really important to the organization and the experience we want our fans and guests we have to keep that top notch,” says Popkey.
Improving concessions is another priority. The organization is three years into a 7-year plan to upgrade food and beverage service for the fans.
“Going to grab and go primarily and what we’ve seen is that it really speeds up the time that our fans can get from their seats, get a concession visit, back to your seat. We’ve seen that cut in half,” adds Popkey.
Packers nation sorely missed that game day experience of 80,000 fans at Lambeau last season. A year later, the green and gold are rolling toward the playoffs again. The Packers hope to ride that momentum into a run to the Super Bowl in February.
“You really noticed it this year getting back to it. It’s not like you didn’t realize how much you missed it, because we did miss it. But to experience this again in a way that is so meaningful is really great for the organization and I know the players and coaches would love to have a couple of home playoff games so that’s what they are shooting for these last few weeks to get into that position,” says Popkey.
Coming up in the next “A Look Inside” on January 3rd. WEAU’s Bob Gallaher Jeff Ralph will provide a behind the scenes of the number-one rated TV show on primetime, NBC’s Sunday Night Football. The Packers are scheduled to be on SNF again in two weeks, January 2nd against the Minnesota Vikings at Lambeau Field.
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