January 14, 2008


Just about everyone has seen pictures or clips of sporting events being played in horrible weather conditions. If you haven't, than you've heard stories about one. What do you mean you haven't? Well on December 31, 1967 in the hallowed grounds of Lambeau Field. The mighty Green Bay Packers faced off against the the Dallas Cowboys in the NFL Championship. The temperatures at game time were 13 below zero with a windchill of -46.

Here are some facts from that game:

* Officially, the field's $80,000 heating system failed due to cold. Unofficially, some say, Lombardi turned it off.

* At one point during the game, the ball froze to the field during break in play

* Officials could not use whistles to stop play. They froze.

* The team canceled marching band performances after noticing blood on a few of the musician's faces.

* Packers fans several times during the contest leaned over the front row to unplug the Cowboys' heated benches.

* After the game, several fans passed out soon after warming up. Their thawed systems finally registered the alcohol they'd consumed to keep warm during the game.

* One fan, an elderly gentleman, died due to exposure.

This game will forever be known in the NFL histories as "The Ice Bowl".

Now you've heard a story about football being played in harsh weather conditions. Why did I bring this up. Well flash forward just over 40 years later to January 12th, 2008. On the Hallowed grounds of Lambeau Field, the Mighty Green Bay Packers faced off against the Seattle Seahawks. The Seahawks coached by Mike Holmgren, the coach that lead the Packers to the Super Bowl in 97 and 98. The man even has a street named for him in Green Bay.

They were captained by once Brett Favre backup, Matt Hasselbeck. Hasselbeck just four years earlier on the same field had faced Green Bay in a playoff game that went into overtime. When the Seahawks won the OT toss and was asked to choose, Matt said, "We want the ball, and we're going to score." And what a beautiful score it was when he threw a touchdown for an interception.

This year was going to be different. In front of a record setting crowd Green Bay took the field with the snow gently falling to the ground. And I was there to see it.

I took my father up to the game on Saturday as some time for the two of us to spend together as Father and son. Folks, I can tell you that this was the best football experience of my life. When we arrived at the stadium the snow was gently falling. At one point of the game it was coming down so hard I couldn't see across the stadium to the seats on the other side. When the snow started to gather they had three guys with brooms come out between the plays and brush off the yard lines. That quickly turned to six guys with brooms, then 6 guys with shovels. Next they brought out a gator with a snowblower attachment and finally it was a full sized farm tractor with a huge snow blower attachment. This was just so the officials and coaches could see where they were on the field.

As we sat in the stands, snow was starting to gather on the fans. Most of us had at least a good dusting of snow. Others were just down right coated in it as the largest flakes I've ever seen fell from the sky. It was a surreal moment watching my team play in that environment. To see a guy get tackled on the 30 and slide all the way to the 15. As one unbelievable play after another happened before my eyes.

Sure the first five minutes was horrible. 20 seconds in to the game we gave the ball over to Seattle on a fumble and they scored. Two plays latter we fumbled it to them again. And again they scored. After five minutes of game time we were down by 14 points.

Then it happened. Brett Favre once again took to the field and lead the Packers to a touchdown and what started a might offensive and defensive come back. The Packers trounced the Seagulls er Seahawks 42-20.

I can honestly say this was the best football game I have ever been to in my life. Everyone I talked to said the same thing. The chances of us being in the stands for a game like this are almost impossible. It really wasn't that cold, temps in the low 30s and no wind. The snow was beautiful and amazing. The intricate play of the teams in the condition is what really made the game fantastic.

The fact that the Packers won, was just the icing on the cake.

Posted by Contagion in Football at January 14, 2008 08:02 PM | TrackBack

OMG!!! You were there!!!! Holy crap I was watching that game and it was GREAT! I LOVED it. Real football. That is just so damned cool that you got to go. I would've frozen to death (yeah, I'm a wimp in the cold), but I'm so happy for you and your dad.

Posted by: Teresa at January 16, 2008 12:04 PM

Perfect! We were watching from the Man Room here and commented many a time what an awesome game it was for the fans in the stands!! Soooo glad you had a great time - Go Pack!

Posted by: Richmond at January 16, 2008 05:25 PM

We need more people
like him,  I agree with you.




Posted by: gdf at December 3, 2008 03:47 AM