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Packers bring fun to Jordy Nelson softball game

June 5th, 2017

GRAND CHUTE – The threat of rain and storms was no match for the Green Bay Packers or their diehard fans Saturday at the Jordy Nelson Charity Softball Game.

It was an opportunity for the more than 8,200 in attendance to see their favorite players on a warm and humid afternoon at Neuroscience Group Field at Fox Cities Stadium.

“They act different on that field than they do on the Packer field,” said Milwaukee’s Deborah Dettman outside of the stadium before the game began. “They have more fun. A lot of antics.”

Antics and lots of goofing around are characteristics of the annual game, which benefits Young Life, a faith-based nonprofit organization that pairs middle school through college students with adults.

“It’s a great way to raise money,” Nelson told reporters before the game. “It’s a great way to raise awareness for Young Life. It’s great for the fans.”

Nelson’s offense put on a dominant show and bested the defense 27-25 after a home run by tight end Richard Rodgers. For much of the game, the offense smashed one home run over the fence after another, even after the teams swapped scores in the fifth inning.

“We put on a good show. We have fun. We kind of act like fools sometimes,” Nelson said. ” … It’s fun to see us out of our element and having a good time.”

It was the first time Russ Blakeslee, of Wisconsin Rapids, was able to catch the annual game.

“My wife comes every year,” Blakeslee said. “It’s just (about) coming out and enjoying it and watching the guys play.”

Before the game started, Young Life received a check for $130,000, and Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin received $3,500  And for a second consecutive year, cornerback Damarious Randall took home the home run derby trophy.

It’s the fourth year Nelson has headlined the event, which had previously been hosted by Donald Driver and Brett Favre.

At the end of the game, Nelson walked up and down and signed scores of softballs, hats, shirts and footballs. He even signed a cast on Amy Carpenter’s left leg.

“I wasn’t sure if I would even be able to come,” Carpenter, of Menasha, said. “Got Jordy to sign it, Randall, Ty Montgomery.

“It’s just a fun event for the community to see the Packers in a different light,” she said.

 

Story by Ethan Safran, courtesy of Appleton Post Crescent.

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