Iowa is an open state, so to speak, when it comes to formal NFL markets, but the Packers make a strong claim to the Hawkeye state's fan base. That support was very evident to the tour after crossing the Mississippi River and making its first stop over the border at Dubuque Senior High School. More than 1,600 students and staff were in attendance in the historic James J. Nora Gymnasium as the players made a surprise entrance.
The Green Bay Packers Tailgate Tour crew surprised students at Dubuque Senior High School in Iowa on Wednesday afternoon to talk about bullying and being inclusive. Photos by Evan Siegle, packers.com
Bullying was the topic at Dubuque and the players made an earnest request that everyone do what they can to stop bullying and protect those that are being bullied.
"You can't put too much value in social media," explained Ty Montgomery. "We've gotten away from human interaction at times. We need to focus on interpersonal relationships and know the difference between constituents and comrades that we find online and the real friends, confidants, that we have in person."
At times, though, negative comments are going to come, be it online, in person, or through some other means, and the players had an approach.
"You need to prepare for them," said Kenny Clark, who knows he'll see or hear comments about his performance on the field. "You have to ignore them and stay positive…move forward."
The assembly featured another $2,000 check presentation, this one in support of Dubuque Senior High's physical education program.
Afterward, the players commented on how attentive the students were.
"I thought they were very engaged," said Kenny Clark. "The best we've seen so far."