Friday, February 23, 2018

Dan Holtz

Thinking of Super Bowl brings back fond Packers memory

With the attention of the nation’s sports fans on Sunday’s Super Bowl, it’s fun to talk football one last time before NFL training camps kick back into action in July.

As my friends and relatives know, the color of my blood is green and gold.

I have many fond memories related to the Green Bay Packers over the years and one of them most recently came to mind.

It involves the last game the Packers played at Milwaukee County Stadium before they moved all of their home games to Lambeau Field in Green Bay.

The game on Dec. 18, 1994, was against the Atlanta Falcons.

Not only was it the last Packers game to be played in Milwaukee, it had a dramatic ending.

The Packers trailed 17-14 with 21 seconds remaining.

Brett Favre took the snap from center and rolled to his right on a pass play.

When he found no one open, he decided to try to scamper the eight yards for a touchdown. He dove over the goal line for a score, which secured not only a 21-17 victory, but a spot in the playoffs.

I have been a Gold package Packers season ticket holder since the 1990 season.

I ventured to Milwaukee to attend Packers home games there for five years and was at that final game at County Stadium with my son, who was a week shy of his 11th birthday.

As we were driving to Milwaukee the morning of the game, I told may son I planned to buy two game programs, one for him and one for me, to commemorate the last time we would ever  attend a game at County Stadium.

We got to the stadium and all the programs were gone. We later learned a speculator bought up all the programs right after they were unloaded from the truck. This guy must have figured he could sell them all to souvenir-hungry fans at inflated prices.

I was disappointed. But that feeling turned to elation a few weeks later.

A game program from that day showed up, unsolicited, in my mailbox.

It was sent by the Packers. Every Gold season ticket holder got one.

In an accompanying letter, the Packers explained that they decided to print additional programs. Because of the situation with the speculator, the Packers wanted to make sure those who attended the game had an opportunity to have that treasured memorabilia.

Class organization.

I pulled out that 23-year-old program to take another look.

It’s cool to be a Packers fan.


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