There are a plethora of roads that have Iconic Identities. There’s Rodeo drive, Route 66 , Broadway, Wall Street-I could go on but you’d get bored and I’m sure I’ve made my point. One road, as many Wisconsin natives know, speaks everything football, at least if you’re a fan of the Pack. True, if you know the area, there are venues, like the Hutson Center, that aren’t set on Lombardi. Yet, If you stroll the walk starting at the Title Town district and continue on Lombardi Avenue, you can’t help allowing a little green and gold to flow through your blood stream.
I got the Idea for this blog after I came across a mile long trek, known as the walk of legends, which flows on Lombardi’s commercial district side. ( In contrast, the other side of the road is residential) I decided to check it out, take a few pictures, and see if it was blogworthy. Of course, with the Stadium in the distance I just kept strolling. Granted, there are a few busy intersections to contend with, but it was a pleasant outing. I was left psyched for the upcoming training camp which, if your from Green Bay, is a fan event in itself.
I am driving down Lombardi Avenue, parking in a local business parking lot-I’m sure they won’t mind. I am curious-“What is this attraction known as ‘The Walk of Legends’? I find out quickly.
Simply, the walk is a string of Monuments paying homage to the traits and players that made the Packers 13 time NFL Champions. The walk is a mile long and intersects Streets boasting names such as Bart Starr Drive and Tony Canedeo Run.
The monuments are cool. Not only do they spruce up this business district, but inform anybody who cares to read on Green Bay Packer history. There’s all sorts of good info. For instance, Don Hutson was both an offensive and defensive player-I’d like to have seen his cardio routine.
After the walk, I’m gaining on the stadium known as Lambeau field. There is quite a bit to do in the in this gigantic mecca of football. The Green Bay Packer Hall of Fame is located in the atrium of the arena. Also, a tour of the Hallowed grounds itself is available. I haven’t toured the Stadium yet, but my blog The Packer Hall of Fame-Green Bay’s shrine details my earlier excursion in this great museum of Packer glory. There’s also a pro shop that is open year round attached to the atrium.
The stadium parking lots are buzzing with activity. I enter the lot casually and snap a photo of statues representing two of the most iconic men, not only in Packer lore, but the NFL itself. One of the statues is Curly Lambeau, the player, coach and founder of the franchise. The second is Vince Lombardi who assembled and coached teams that won five championships in seven years, including the first two Super Bowls. They stand guard at a flight of concrete stairs, ascending towards a gate facing Lombardi Avenue. I’m not the only one hoping to get a great picture of these detailed depictions.
Across the street from the stadium stands another landmark. Its simply a fence, you know, like a white picket fence, except its painted with packer graffiti and a slogan. It’s been a tradition that has been kept for over thirty years.
I continue on and make my way to a recent addition to Lombardi Ave, the Title Town district. This place provides year round fun. In the Winter, there is a hip and charming skating rink beneath a large man made sledding hill known as Arien’s hill. Tubes and skates are available for rent for these activities.
Today, I’m staring at different types of fun. Yard games, from shuffleboard to bean bag toss, are set up on the grounds. Also, there is an elaborate playground, the apparatus for kids play in this park blows my mind-we only had a jungle gym dangerously constructed with steel pipes when I was young. To top off the activity center right, a full length football field, complete with goalposts, stretches beyond the play area.
One could spend a joyful day just playing games and running the field, but there’s more appeal. Atop the Kohler Lodge, a stylishly classy hotel, lies the Tavern in the Sky. The bar is much like the rest of the hotel, classy. What sells this place for me is the balcony, as you sit on the fifth floor, that over looks the Packers’ Stadium. The beer list is really good too. There is a dining room set off from the lounge, where one can get a meal, I’m not sure of the prices but its probably safe to say, they’re a bit pricy.
Nearby rests another great restaurant and bar known as Hinterland Brewery. Yes, the beer is brewed right at the establishment. They offer great brews such as Packer Land Pilsner and Hinterland Cherry Wheat, along with domestics and others. This is a great place for fine dining, but watch out, the prices are quite steep.
The most cleverly titled restaurant is a small bistro situated under Ariens hill, known as 46 below. For those of you that don’t know, that was the temperature, if you factor in the wind chill, of the famous Ice Bowl. I smile thinking that today its in the mid 70’s.
I sigh, thinking of all the football fans that will grace these areas come August. Preseason games do quite well in Green Bay-its a chance for those without season tickets to see a game fairly reasonably. Today the area is buzzing with sightseers also, but the true electricity will be during the anticipation of a Packer victory.
If your in the Green Bay area and searching for some fun, take a drive to the west side and follow the Lombardi Avenue exit. Its the result of a Football crazy town and a national following. Safe travels!