Sunday, November 15, 2009

Think locally: economic impact of the NFL

Family and friends know that I back the Green Bay Packers, win or lose. I dress in their colors from head to toe. Chuck earns a portion of his income at Lambeau Field each year. We're not season ticket holders; the legendary waiting list is too long to consider. We take our enjoyment of the game in our living rooms, texting or g-chatting our reactions to La Petite on her college campus.

La Petite spent her first nine years living in the shadow of Lambeau Field, on the corner of Oneida Street and the aptly-named Stadium Drive. She learned to ride a bike in the Packers' parking lot, and learned about entrepreneurship with her lemonade stand during training camp. She's in her twenties now and training to be a photojournalist, and she spent a day job-shadowing at a pre-season game. That's one awesome "Take Your Kid to Work Day!"

Now one of my favorite green sites has recognized the economic value of a local football team. Most NFL teams belong to a single wealthy investor. The Green Bay Packers belong to individual stockholders, among them many Wisconsin residents. The stock has emotional value only; no dividends. Stockholders attend an annual meeting (at Lambeau Field, of course), but have no say in team decisions.

Mother Nature Network posts green news and views every day. This weekend, they included a guest post about local economies and, you guessed it, the Green Bay Packers. Win or lose on the field, the team has a great impact on the people of Green Bay and Wisconsin.

When you add into the equation the idea that Chuck does most of his Christmas shopping at the Packer Pro Shop, it's easy to see the impact. I think I'll go get our cheesehead hat and get ready to watch them play the Cowboys! Cringe. Wisconsin native Tony Romo might just tear my green and gold team to pieces.

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