Energy-filled event caps first day

Posted by Aaron Popkey on April 15, 2015 – 9:25 am

150415-tour-day-one-650An electric atmosphere with more than 1,400 Packers fans capped the kickoff day of the Packers 10th anniversary Tailgate Tour Tuesday night at the Dunn County Fairgrounds Ice Arena in Menomonie.

The event benefited the Bridge to Hope, a nonprofit dedicated to ending domestic violence, sexual assault and human trafficking. Bridge to Hope aims to empower those who have been affected by violence, provide options and give support to individuals for a fresh start.

“It was awesome seeing the community coming together,” said Naomi Cummings, executive director at Bridge to Hope. “The joy at the event and the happiness was outstanding.”

After the fanfare-filled entrance, the group, led by Mark Murphy, spoke to the fans about a variety of topics and answered questions. Everything was game, including the upcoming season, rules changes and favorite players.

Fans can expect to learn some interesting tidbits about the players during the sessions. And in a humorous way.

Photo Gallery: Menomonie tailgate party

For instance, when players were asked about when they started playing football, Gilbert Brown had a lighthearted way of saying he had to wait until high school to begin.

“I was too fat for little league,” he said, to the laughter of the audience. “Something about being safe for the other players. They wouldn’t let me play. I played in high school.”

Micah Hyde spoke about his disappointment in how rules changes seem to benefit the offense.

“You can’t even touch the receivers,” he said.

In addition to the money raised, the awareness garnered for the hosting nonprofits by the Tailgate Tour parties in the local community is as valuable. That was certainly the case for Bridge to Hope as well.

“It was awesome to put the word out in the community about what we do,” said Cummings.

Day 2 of the tour awaits!


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