Recognition of ‘USA Football Month’ continues Thursday night during the Packers’ final preseason game against the Kansas City Chiefs as the Packers have invited four youth football teams from the Journey House of Milwaukee to take the field for the USA Football halftime scrimmage. The teams also will be recognized on the field during the national anthem.
‘USA Football Month,’ a national campaign that takes place throughout the NFL preseason, incorporates youth football scrimmages at NFL stadiums and shares USA Football messages during network preseason telecasts.
USA Football is the official youth football development partner of the Green Bay Packers, the NFL, the NFL Players Association and the league’s other 31 teams. It is the only organization in the NFL’s 91-year history to be recognized as the league’s official youth football development partner. Additional details can be found online at http://usafootball.com.
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Members of the Wisconsin National Guard’s 147th Aviation Battalion also will take the field Thursday for ‘Operation Fan Mail.’ After performing the national anthem during last year’s Packers-Cowboys ‘Military Appreciation Game’ via satellite while deployed in Iraq, the Packers are happy to welcome several battalion members to Lambeau Field after finishing their tour this past spring.
‘Operation Fan Mail,’ which debuted in 2007, is designed to recognize families with a member who is on active duty. The Packers and WPS Health Insurance will host a family at each 2011 home game and recognize them on the field during pregame activities. More than 38 families have been recognized during the past three-plus seasons.
To choose families, the Packers and WPS Health Insurance are asking interested families, or friends of eligible families, to submit an essay, 500 words or less, on why a particular family should be saluted. Essays can be sent to: Operation Fan Mail, P.O. Box 10628, Green Bay, WI, 54307-0628, or can be submitted online at: http://nfl.packers.com/gameday/gameday_promotions/operation_fan_mail.
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During pregame activities, the Bishop’s Charities Committee will present a trophy to both Aaron Rodgers and Jermichael Finley, the co-MVPs from last year’s Bishop’s Charities Game.
Also taking place at the annual Bishop’s Charities Game is the pregame recognition of Packers alums Gary Knafelc and Jim Temp. Both Knafelc and Temp will be in the Packers Pro Shop on Wednesday, Aug. 31, from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., signing autographs and taking part in various fan activities leading up to Thursday’s kickoff.
Knafelc (1954-69) joined the Packers as a free agent in 1954 and began his NFL career in impressive fashion, catching a 28-yard touchdown pass in the final minute of the 1955 season opener to beat the Detroit Lions, 20-17. For his game-winning catch, fans stormed the field in celebration, making him the only player in Packers history to be carried off the field at City Stadium/Lambeau Field. During his nine seasons with the Packers, Knafelc played a total of 92 games, making 134 receptions for 1,930 yards and 21 touchdowns.
Temp (1957-60) a second-round draft pick in 1955, spent four years with the Packers as a defensive end. Temp, who played in the first game at Lambeau Field against the Chicago Bears, played a total of 43 games throughout his career.
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The national anthem will be performed by Laura Kaeppeler, Miss Wisconsin. An Air Force flyover will conclude the anthem.