Arriving at 8 am in Green Bay last Sunday, we were third in the parking lot.

For the 200th meeting of that which is the best rivalry in professional football Green Bay Packers fans were up early, music was loud, the sun was out, and it was cold.

Five degrees, to be exact.

Tailgating outside at Lambeau in the cold, then going into the game is its own animal.

As my friend Callie would say, layering up pre-game for tailgating and then kickoff is “a process.”

On cannot simply ride in a vehicle for an extended period with all those layers on without getting way way way too hot and the frequency of bathroom use must be considered.

In my experience, the process goes something like this:

Warm socks, long underwear, jeans, boots, and winter jacket.

Gloves, hat, scarf, toe warmers next added followed by snow pants, ski/snowmobile or hunting jacket with hand warmers, cardboard for under your feet, and Styrofoam to sit on in Lambeau.

Lastly, whiskey jacket. Indeed, there were plenty of options for the shotski this week within a two-parking space radius.

Fireball Cinnamon Whisky, Irish whiskey, and peppermint schnapps, all for added warmth.

Friends of friends got a chuckle when I offered blackberry brandy too.

“Haven’t seen that in about 30 years,” was the actual quote.

Welcome back or to Wisconsin; help yourself to a brat or some cheese curds on the grill. Go Pack!

Inside Lambeau, I’ve witnessed the process in reverse:

Whiskey jacket

No jacket

No shirt

I can honestly say it wasn’t the whiskey that made me shed by jacket twice to proudly display my Aaron Jones jersey each time he made it into the end zone versus the Bears.

A 13x World Champion vibe always, the last time I made a batch of brandy-soaked cherries for tailgating was the last time the Packers made the playoffs in 2016.

Time for a new batch, counting on the playoffs running through Green Bay this year.

Playoff Tailgate Recipe: 1 cup Brandy / 2/3 water* / 1/2 cup sugar / 4 cups pitted sour cherries. *swap Gran Marnier for some of the water…..
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