Thursday, July 24, 2014

Packers 5K Preview

There are so many things going on! Last night, I went to Member Open House at the Museum of Science and Industry, and tonight I am running the Esprit de She 10K. More to come about both of these soon. But let's first talk about the upcoming weekend.

In less than 24 hours, I will be enroute to Green Bay, Wisconsin with my friend Helen.


Helen is moving to Korea next month for a teaching stint. Therefore, we've been trying to find a time to get together before her departure. I've never been to Green Bay, but Helen has roots there. She and I have talked for years and years about doing a weekend trip there. We are finally pulling the trigger on doing it! Yay!

I had mentioned here that I signed up for the Packers 5K. Whenever I travel someplace, I always look for local races to run. As luck would have it, the Green Bay Packers are opening their NFL training camp this weekend. They are hosting all kinds of fun events, such as a family movie night at Lambeau Field tomorrow night, tours of the stadium, etc.


Then I saw that the Packers 5K was taking place this Saturday night. Talk about great timing! A Packers race probably takes the cake for any and all races hosted in Green Bay, ever. Runners get to run on the Lambeau playing field, go through the player's tunnel, etc, etc. Wow!

Normally when I shop for races, I evaluate location, logistics, cost, cause, and swag. But I had some different considerations for this race.

Namely, I am not a Packers fan. But for those that are (including Helen), Lambeau is sacred and hallowed worshipping ground. In short, this is a really, really big deal.

Here's my obligatory mention of the historic rivalry between the Chicago Bears and the Green Bay Packers. It's the stuff of legends.


I think I've mentioned before that I am generally not amused by insurance ad campaigns. But I have to say that I get a kick out of this commercial featuring Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers and da Bears Superfans:


Being from Chicago, I won't go into all the details about my sportsfan dilemmas. I do root for my hometown Bears, of course. In fact, my friend Rose and I are going to watch Bears Training Camp in Bourbonnais in a few weeks. We're even dragging Adam along to Bears Family Night at Soldier Field next weekend (even though the first question he asked me was, "Can I wear my Roethlisberger jersey?") You get the idea.

I wasn't sure how well my Bear-fan friends would react to me running a race in rivalry territory, though. Believe me when I say that some would consider this grounds for getting kicked out of the union. The rivalry has resulted in the common sighting of things like this:


and this:


and even this:



(That license plate? Wow. Just wow.)

I mentioned my thoughts on the politics of this 5K to Helen. Being the very supportive friend that she is, she said I could register for the race under her name. =D


I actually did give some consideration to the idea of running incognito. But, ultimately I wanted to be able to share the experience openly. There's no reason not to run a race at Lambeau Field because of hometown sports loyalties. At least not as long as I don't give the impression that I am jumping ship on my own teams, right? FINAL VERDICT: Happily registered in my own name!

With this in mind, some consideration also went into what attire I should wear to the race. No Packers gear. I didn't want to be obnoxious and wear a different team's gear to a Packers-hosted race, either. So my plan is to wear something neutral. In a perfect sportsfan world, this means no green or yellow (Packers colors), and no orange or blue (Bears colors).


I do know that rabid sportsfans such as myself tend to take these things way too seriously. So all sportsfan considerations aside, I am looking forward to an absolutely awesome weekend hanging out with Helen. She is going to be a great hostess that will help me do as the locals do. And this weekend's festivities will be the ultimate in great local experiences! =)


13 comments:

  1. While so called "neutral" attire is a safe play, I would remind you that we live in Steeler "Nation." That means that Steeler attire is acceptable, EVERYWHERE ! HERE WE GO !

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    1. Reading this made me smile because it is so you. I love how loyally devoted you are to the Nation. =)

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  2. Soooooo excited! I'll happily play the role of your 5k cheerleader! No matter who you are and what team you cheer for, I think it's a special experience to run such historic grounds. Glad you can add to your running experience in a unique way!

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    1. I am super excited, too! Thanks again for hosting me this weekend - it is going to be a blast! This is going to be a very, very marquis experience in my running career. I am also excited because I've never had the privilege of you spectating any of my races. This will be awesome. =)

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  3. Living in Vikings Country, I feel your pain. I don't know if I could do it without a Vikes jersey. ;-)

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    1. Natalie! I wanted to tell you that I'm sorry to be so MIA on your blog, I've been reading all of your posts but just haven't been commenting as of late. I'll get back on track soon!

      On that note - Helen was telling me that the rivalry between the Bears and the Packers is a "friendly" rivalry... but that the rivalry between the Packers and the Vikings is a bloody one. Your thoughts?

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    2. Don't worry - I know it's hard to keep up with life sometimes. I don't mind if you're MIA, as long as you're not DOA. ;-)

      While I've never seen the Bears/Packers rivalry in action (and thus I cannot comment on it), I'd have to agree that the Vikings/Packers rivalry is NOT friendly. And unfortunately, when we play in MN, people are not nice to opposing fans (which makes me a little bummed out - this is for fun, after all). Fortunately, I've heard that Green Bay is a little more welcoming...

      Either way, Vikings and Packers fans are definitely NOT friends. Which puts me in a odd spot, since I went to school in Madison - I'm a Badger fan, but not so much a Packer backer. Most people can't figure out why I'm divided and always try to lump me into Packer fandom. In reality, I couldn't really care less about either team, I prefer college sports.

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    3. Natalie, you are hilarious. I really do love your sense of humor. =)

      I've found in general that folks from Minnesota are really nice. And the folks in Green Bay were also really nice based on my experience this past weekend. So it is amazing that things can change so much when you put football loyalties on the line.

      Oh goodness! That would be quite a conflict for you to go to school in Madison with all the football loyalties emanating there. Incidentally - I applied to Madison myself, though as you probably guessed I chose to go elsewhere for college. But my dad went to school in Madison back in the day. It's a gorgeous campus!

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  4. You could wear Bears socks or something small just to see if you can get away with it. It might make the race more exciting: If a Packer fan notices your socks they may chase after you and you might set a PR trying to outrun them! :) Have fun!

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    1. HAHAHAHA! I like that idea. Anything to get a new PR. :-)

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    2. Pete - LOVE IT! You are so clever! I was actually thinking about the fact that my running shoes are turquoise and blue, which is a LITTLE bit Bear-like. Nice and subtle, right? LOL

      Natalie - agreed! I am all about creative methods of PR-motivation!!! =D

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  5. This sounds like a blast. I agree with Pete - I think socks would be great. Green Bay is actually a pretty cool place - I once visited and toured the field (though admittedly, I am not a huge football fan). Best of luck!

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    1. Meghan! It was so nice to finally meet you in person last Thursday! I am sorry we didn't have more of a chance to talk, but I definitely look forward to seeing you again at future events. =)

      I took the Lambeau Field tour this past weekend, too! It was very cool and they take their football VERY very seriously up there. We'll have to compare notes on our visits. =)

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