Resch Center – Green Bay Blizzard
Photos by Aaron S. Terry, Stadium Journey
Stadium Info FANFARE Score: 4.00
Resch Center 820 Armed Forces Dr Green Bay, WI 54304
Year Opened: 2002
In the Shadow of Lambeau
The Green Bay Packers are obviously the most well-known football team in Green Bay, Wisconsin, and perhaps the most well-known in the NFL as well. But you may not know about the other professional football team in Green Bay, which plays its home games right next door to Lambeau Field at Resch Center – the Green Bay Blizzard began playing indoor football in 2003 as members of Arena Football 2, and moved to the Indoor Football League (IFL) in 2010. The Blizzard have played at Resch Center for their entire existence.
Food & Beverage 5
Resch Center has a ridiculous number of concessions options available from its main stands, including everything from hot dogs, brats, and burgers to chicken sandwiches and boneless wings, and sides ranging from popcorn and kettle corn to packaged candy, hot pretzels, and of course cheese curds. The most expensive food item rings in at only $6, and you can get $2 hot dogs at every game. Drink selections include soda, bottled water, Gatorade, Bubblr, draft beer, and Bud Light and vodka seltzers – non-alcoholic drinks range from $2 to $4.50, while the seltzers and beer run $8 to $10.50.
Besides the main stands there is also a Mexican cantina offering mixed drinks and additional beer options, as well as nachos, walking tacos, and churros. There is also a smoothie stand, as well as a convenience store-type stand which offers a wider selection of canned beer, bottled water, and soda, plus Dippin’ Dots ice cream.
The Green Bay Blizzard offer a wonderful atmosphere for fans – besides the action of the field they have a great mascot (think the Abominable Snowman), fan contests during breaks in the action, such as fans having to catch footballs in shopping carts, local youth teams coming in to play rugby on the field during halftime, promotions where fans can win prizes by throwing footballs onto the middle of the field, TVs in the hallways so you don’t miss the action while at the concession stands, and best of all, special events like Micah Tyler in concert after the game during Faith & Fellowship Night – there was a stage set up behind one of the end zones. There are also premiere seating options like the Bud Light Cave, great music played throughout the game that fans can dance to, and a fabulous (and hilarious) PA announcer.
Being right next to Lambeau Field, it is not surprising there are plenty of restaurants and hotels within walking distance of Resch Center – popular spots include Stadium View Bar, Restaurant, & Banquet Hall (a Packers-themed sports bar); Badger State Brewing Company; and Anduzzi’s Sports Club on Holmgren Way. There is also a Buffalo Wild Wings nearby, and for hotels there is a Hilton Garden Inn right next to the arena.
If you plan to be in town for the weekend, of course any true football fan should make a visit to the Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame (attached to Lambeau Field), and you can also take the Oneida Walk of Legends, a 1-mile walking tour exploring 24 statues honoring the Packers.
The fans at Blizzard games are passionate, they really seem to enjoy themselves and cheer at all the right times, but the facility is pretty empty. Even on a special events night with a free concert following the game, and all the fun activities the staff brings in to enhance the experience, there is just not much of a draw. This is a little disappointing for a team that has been in the area for almost 20 years.
Once you get inside Resch Center it is very easy to move around – the concessions lines are pretty short and there are plenty of bathrooms. The concourse is also absolutely massive so it is easy to move around, and there are stairs, escalators, and elevators all over the place tucked into various corners and hallways, so getting where you need to go is a breeze.
The main drawback in regard to access is the parking – there is a lot right across the street from Resch Center ($10 per car), but this road backs up pretty badly; you could easily wait 15 minutes to half an hour just to get into the lot. Granted, once you get into the lot it is a super short walk to the venue, but you may be better off parking further away if you want to save some time and stress.
Return on Investment 5
Attending a Green Bay Blizzard game is absolutely worth it – there is a trend nowadays with small venues across the country trying to avoid Ticketmaster and its fees (in order to reduce ticket prices and get more fans), and the Blizzard are all in on this. They instead use a site called Ticket Star, which charges much less in fees, or you can just buy at the door starting at $12 and avoid the fees altogether.
$12 is a steal for this level of football – given all the great amenities, such as the free concert and getting to see kids play rugby during halftime, you really can’t beat this price point. Add in only $10 for parking, plus the ultra-cheap concessions, and you really are getting your money’s worth at Resch Center, even if you bring a large crowd.
The Blizzard offer several great bonuses for fans who attend games at Resch Center – first off they have special promotions for most of their games, like Superheroes Night when kids are invited to dress up as their favorite superhero, or Faith & Fellowship Night when they have a free post-game concert by popular faith singer Micah Tyler. They also create special game balls, each with different graphics to match that day’s theme, for each of these games.
They also throw out some really cool classic sound effects, for example when something good happens for the Blizzard they play the power up sound from Super Mario (the sound it makes when Mario grows bigger), and when something bad happens for the home team they play the sound of Pac-Man being eaten by the ghosts. They also have a team gear stand on the upper level if you want to grab your Blizzard swag, and the mascot is really top notch.
Indoor football is a lot of fun – with its shorter field and unique rules you are guaranteed to see a lot of scoring, and here at Resch Center you can get really close to the action, and even hear the smack of the pads coming together, or the sounds of the players trash-talking each other. The Blizzard take the sport to a whole new level with all the extras they throw in, so I definitely recommend seeing a game here – you won’t regret it.