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The Global Ambassadors – Monday Night Football at Lambeau Field

Lambeau Field

#3 Monday Night Football at Lambeau Field: November 2017

Initially considered an opportunistic and convenient (wedge) event to attend, the Monday Night Football game featuring the Packers at Lambeau Field, proved to be anything but that. Approximately five months prior to the game, I was diagnosed with a rare sarcoma in my left quad. Requiring chemotherapy, surgery, radiation, and physical therapy, dealing with the cancer was a stark reminder of both the reality and urgency associated with our bucket list.  The cancer also made attending the game against the Detroit Lions a compelling personal and, at times, stretch goal. But naturally, it was bound to happen. After all, the premise of the bucket list was never contemplated to be 2 by 52!

Ken Wachter, our de facto host, afforded us amazing accommodations and access once we arrived.  He arranged for us to visit the Packers Hall of Fame and attend a fun and lighthearted luncheon/chalk talk with Steve Young and Brett Favre.  He also provided us coveted gameday tailgate passes. These activities were complemented by a tour of Lambeau Field.

The Saturday evening we arrived proved relatively tame and was marked by visiting a few local bars — Anduzzi’s where we met Green Bay’s version of octomom, The Bar which was not quite as aptly named as we had anticipated, and The Stadium View which was, in fact, a suitable dive bar.  The same could not be said of Sunday, which was anything but tame.

Following our Sunday morning visit to the Hall of Fame and our tour of Lambeau Field hosted by former Packers WR Antonio Freeman, which included running out of the tunnel and onto the famed frozen tundra with blaring crowd noise piped in through the speakers, we had just enough time to navigate the Packers’ massive team store in an effort to secure the most important gameday accessory: Cheesehead Hats!Lambeau Field

When asked where a good place might be to watch NFL action while bar hopping, we were encouraged to check out the watering holes along Broadway Avenue. Certainly Green Bay’s version of Broadway Avenue would pale in comparison to Nashville’s, but we figured we’d give it a shot. What began innocently enough over greyhounds at The Wet Whistle, methodically deteriorated as we worked our way down Broadway and through fourteen other bars in what turned out to be “The Bender on Broadway.” In addition to The Wet Whistle, we managed to grace the following ‘establishments’ during our six-hour bar crawl: The Packer Stadium Lounge, Overtime Grill & Pub, Lucky 7’s, Brewski’s, Richard Craniums (think about it), Public Haus, Rum Runners, Gasoline Bar, Old School, Jekyll & Hide, The Sardine Can, Prohibition Spirits & Cigar Lounge, Keggers, and Lenny’s Tap.  Needless to say, we soaked up a whole lot more than just the local atmosphere!  One of us (pretty easy guess) imbibed enough of the Broadway booze that he tripped and fell into our hotel room’s bathtub and was stuck like turtle on its back.

Fortunately, Sunday night eventually gave way to gameday. With our tickets, complements of the NFL, tucked carefully in our coat pockets, and wearing our layered

Lambeau Field

attire in anticipation of the 30-degree weather, we set out for the stadium. Ample tailgating reinforced just how iconic the venue and its steep traditions remain, as well as the committed and endearing nature of Packers’ fans. But the same could not be said for the matchup itself as it proved to be neither iconic nor endearing…

Without injured star quarterback, Aaron Rodgers, the Packers looked lost, and eventually they actually did lose – and did so in an uninspiring fashion. In fact, they looked so bad that after the game a local radio personality likened the team without Rodgers to Queen without Freddie Mercury, “The Office” without Steve Carell, and even The Three Stooges without Curly…ouch!

Anyway, the final score: Lions 30, Packers 17

More important final score: Bucket List 3, Cancer 0

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