“The whole stadium is not nice. There’s nothing fancy about it. It’s bleacher seats.”
That right there is Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Adam Thielen talking about one of the greatest, if not the greatest, venues in all of sports – Lambeau Field.
I have many things to say.
I know Thielen went on the Pat McAfee show and clarified his comments, saying that Lambeau Field is one of his favorite places to play, his wife loves it, etc…
However, his comments inspired me to write about why I love Lambeau. So here it is.
I was 14 years old when I visited Green Bay for the first time. I went with my Dad, my brother and a close family friend. We had tickets to a late December game against the Tennessee Titans.
I remember the drive into Green Bay like it was yesterday. There I was, expecting to see big city lights and skyscrapers. What I saw instead was just a massive stadium smack-dab in the middle of what looked to be a bustling little town.
I was already hooked.
And then I stepped into the stadium.
The Packers went on to beat the Titans in a 55-7 beat-down. We Green Bay fans were hoping to see our defense shut out the visitors. So when the Titans scored a garbage time touchdown at the end of the game, we were understandably disappointed. But then, out of the blue, the stadium started chanting “Bears still suck” as a way to make us feel better.
I never wanted to leave.
Since then, I’ve been back three times – most recently to the Packers-Seahawks divisional round playoff game in January of 2020.
Why it’s awesome
Opened in 1957 as City Stadium, and later renamed to Lambeau Field in 1965, the venue has a rich history as one of the most iconic football fields ever.
The Ice Bowl. Lambeau Leaps. Freezing cold temperatures.
There’s nothing better than the tradition of titles, history of iconic moments and the passion of fans who will sit through the good moments and bad, regardless of temperature.
You can literally feel it when you step through one of the entries into the stadium bowl. The feeling is unlike anything you’ve ever felt.
And you feel it every single time.
So, yeah, there’s bleacher seats. Yeah, it’s maybe a little bit older. But I would take Titletown, trophies and history over a shiny new stadium with nothing to put in it 10 out of 10 times.
I mean, shoot, season tickets at Lambeau Field have been sold out since 1960. You can put your name on the wait list right now for them and you’ll wait for decades until you receive them.
Seems like it’s a pretty good place to me.
You can bet your buns I’ll be there again next year standing the whole game with a cold beer in my hand, cheering passionately for the team I love.
Gunnar Davis is a lifelong Packers fan and a recent graduate of Simpson College, where he was a 3-year letterwinner on the offensive line and graduated with a degree in multimedia communications. You can follow him on Twitter at @Gunnar57Davis.