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  • Sat., Apr. 19, 2014 12:30PM - 3:00PM CDT Tailgate Tour: Merrill party

    The Green Bay Packers announced plans for the ninth ‘Green Bay Packers Tailgate Tour,’ set for April 15-19. This year’s tour includes two stops in Michigan, in addition to three Wisconsin stops, to visit with fans and thank them in person for their support.

    Tour celebrities will include Packers President/CEO Mark Murphy, players Jarrett Bush, Brad Jones and Mason Crosby, and Packers alumni Paul Coffman, Lynn Dickey and James Lofton.

    The tailgate parties will welcome the players and alumni arriving at each location at 6 p.m., and will run until 8:30 p.m., except in Merrill, where the tailgate party will take place from 12:30 to 3 p.m. A local non-profit organization will host each party which will feature food, giveaways, question-and-answer sessions and autographs. Tailgate party tickets cost $30.

    General admission tickets also will be available for $5, which includes access to the Q-and-A sessions as well as tailgate party activities. Food and beverage will be available for purchase. Due to space limitations, no general admission tickets will be available in Ironwood. 

    One hundred percent of the Tailgate Tour proceeds will benefit the hosting organizations.

    Tickets for the tailgate parties at all locations will go on sale Friday, Feb. 28. ‘Green Bay Packers Tailgate Tour’ tailgate party locations, hosting organizations and ticket information are as follows:

    Merrill: MARC. To benefit Riverbend Trail. Tickets on sale at Merrill Chamber of Commerce, 705 N. Center Ave., Merrill; Dave’s County Market, 300 E. 1st St., Merrill; and Drew’s Piggly Wiggly, 3404 E. Main St., Merrill. Tickets also available online at www.merrillchamber.org.

  • Sat., Apr. 26, 2014 8:00AM - 6:00PM CDT Packers Pro Shop Tent Sale

    The sale is taking place earlier than in previous years, due to the construction at Lambeau Field and the work that the Pro Shop team must complete in preparation for the new store, which will open this summer. Visitors to Lambeau Field should enter the Atrium through the Oneida Nation Gate. Parking is available in the lot on Lambeau Field’s east side near the Oneida Nation Gate, which can be accessed off Oneida Street and Lombardi Avenue.

    The sale will feature the traditional mix of Pro Shop items greatly reduced in price and other special purchases.

    The team’s football operations staff also has provided Packers team apparel no longer in use, including a large assortment of t-shirts, shorts, jackets, jerseys and pants. Some items are practice-worn gear not normally available in the Pro Shop.

    The tent sale began in 1994 in the parking lot outside the former Pro Shop on the north end of Lambeau Field and grew into a popular event. Now in its 11th year in the Atrium, the tent sale also was held in the west side stadium concourse in previous years.

  • Sat., May. 10, 2014 7:00PM CDT Eddie Lacy appearance 22nd Annual Doug Jirschele Memorial Sports Award Banquet
  • Sat., Jun. 07, 2014 8:30AM - 3:30PM CDT JPP Kids Clinic

    The 17th annual Junior Power Pack Kids Clinic is set for Saturday, June 7, 2014 in the Don Hutson Center with sessions ranging from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

    The Junior Power Pack Clinic gives members ages 5-14 years old the opportunity to practice football skills and drills with other Packers backers and a few up-and-coming Packers players.  Parents/Guardians are welcome to come and watch their child/ren participate in the clinic. 

    Members may choose one of three sessions to attend:

    • Session 1 – 8:30 to 10 a.m.
    • Session 2 – 11 to 12:30 p.m.
    • Session 3 – 2 to 3:30 p.m.

    The event will be held inside the Don Hutson Center, the Packers indoor practice facility. Parking for the event is available in the lot on Lambeau Field’s east side near the Oneida Nation Gate.  

    The Junior Power Pack Clinic is a member’s only event and will have a registration fee of $5.

    Deadline to register:

    • New Members – May 11, 2014
    • Current Members – May 18, 2014

    To sign up to become a member of the Junior Power Pack and receive an invitation to the clinic fans can go to www.packers.com/jpp.

  • Sat., Jun. 14, 2014 2:30PM CDT Jerry Parins Cruise for Cancer

    The eleventh annual Jerry Parins Cruise for Cancer motorcycle ride will be held, rain or shine, on Saturday, June 14, 2014. The ride will start at Vandervest Harley-Davidson (1966 Velp Avenue, Green Bay) and will make a fun-filled stop at the Seymour Fireman's Picnic, held at the Outagamie County Fairgrounds in Seymour.

    Ride Day Schedule

    • 9-10:30 am: Registration at Vandervest Harley-Davidson, Geen Bay
    • 11 am: Depart Vandervest Harley-Davidson, Green Bay
    • 12 pm: Arrive in Seymour. Enjoy food, beverages, entertainment and a short program.
    • 2:30 pm: Party kicks off at the new South Endzone Festival Foods MVP Deck at Lambeau Field! Guests can access the space by way of the Shopko Gate. See the field and enjoy the atmosphere from this beautiful indoor/outdoor space newly opened and accessed by very few. The party will include silent and live auction, food, beverages, music and merchandise available for purchase.

    More information: http://cruiseforcancer.org/




Dotson answered the call in '96

Posted May 26, 2012

It was already a fearsome unit prior to 1996, with future Hall of Famer Reggie White anchoring the Packers defensive line at left end, Sean Jones and his over 100 career sacks on the right side and the 350-pound “Gravedigger,” Gilbert Brown, at nose tackle.

Despite that star-studded trio, GM Ron Wolf walked to the podium in March over 15 years ago and announced with confidence that with the signing of defensive tackle Santana Dotson, Green Bay had found the missing piece of the puzzle. The suggestion was not just for the defense, but for a team that had lost to Dallas in the playoffs for three straight seasons.

“You realize what pressure really is when the expectations are that high,” Dotson said this week as he looked back on Wolf’s comments and Dotson’s arrival in Green Bay as high-profile free agent. “When your employer says that, I took it as if I was responsible for what happened that season. It was one of those things where you either sink or swim.”

By luring Dotson from Tampa Bay with a three-year contract, Wolf proved to be as shrewd as ever. The Packers won Super Bowl XXXI in ’96, the defense only allowed 13 points per game, and Dotson posted 5.5 sacks. There was the thrill of the moment after Green Bay defeated the Patriots in the Superdome, but it also allowed Dotson to breathe a little easier after an intense first season with the Packers.

“They had been in the NFC Championship the year before, and here I was coming from the Buccaneers,” he said. “I was in awe at first. I remember wanting to be an asset instead of a liability. I hate to be corny, but after holding that Lombardi Trophy, knowing my wife and mother were crying in the stands because they knew how special it was for me, that’s what stories and movies are written about.”

He now lives in Houston, and his focus is the Santana Dotson Foundation, which is committed to providing kids in underprivileged areas an improved quality of life. Along with camps and workshops, awarding seven scholarships a year and academic tutoring, the foundation also operates the sprawling Dotson Family Park. The facility includes behavior and health services and youth baseball, soccer and football leagues. The park is affiliated with the Houston Astros and the Alief School District.

“It’s a big project, and what happened was I started looking back at the reasons I ended up being the person I am,” Dotson said. “There was a coach who picked me up from the age of nine until I was 12 to bring me to practice. So we do youth sports for kids and they are required to turn in a report card. We take in whole families for general counseling and we do some leadership counseling. You realize how many folks are definitely in need.”

Dotson also remembers White, whose locker was near his, as a dramatic influence on his life. White also recruited Dotson to Green Bay when he was a free agent.

“Reggie called me, and I had heard his name for so long it was something really special,” Dotson said. “This was Reggie White calling me and I was like a kid at Christmas, but I tried to play it cool. With that Reggie voice he told me they were putting something special together in Green Bay.

“I’ve always told people that you had your mom and dad looking out for your best interests, and then you had Reggie White. I started my foundation in ’93 in Tampa Bay, and I kept it separate from football, but he was the one who made me feel like it was OK to bring the two together. He was always talking about family, about being a better husband, a better father, about doing service for your community. That’s where his focus was. When he passed, I tried to figure out how he had so much time for so many people.”

Dotson signed with the Packers after four years with the Bucs, where he was named NFC defensive rookie of the year in ’92 after recording a career-high 10 sacks. Though the Bucs never made the playoffs during his time in Tampa Bay, he remembers those years fondly. He finished up his 11-year career with a brief stint with the Redskins in ’02.

When he looks back on his NFL career, he thinks of having been a fixture in Green Bay, where he played in 88 games, starting 83. What means the most to Dotson was joining former Packers that played on the four Super Bowl-winning teams. He’s still trying to forget the crushing loss to Denver in Super Bowl XXXII. He brings his 16-year-old son, Kahri, a promising linebacker at Memorial (Houston) High School, up to Lambeau Field to soak up the atmosphere.

“The name on the trophy is Vince Lombardi,” said Dotson. “The guys who played in the first two Super Bowls would show up in the locker room from time to time, guys like Bart Starr and Willie Davis. I remember when they’d walk in, they were very gracious, but you knew when they were there. It was something greater. There was some silence. We saw Ray Nitschke before the Super Bowl in New Orleans, and it was like your grandpa saying he was proud of you. When you have Hall of Famers coming out of the woodwork, there’s some added pressure.”

For a list of more "Where are they now?" stories on packers.com, click here.

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