A look inside the Lambeau Field press box
Kendeigh's colleague at WISN, Stephanie Sutton, worked in the Bay Area prior to her return to the Midwest. Sutton had few positives for both the Raiders and 49ers setup, including the food, which she said, members of the press had to pay for. Not in Green Bay, where the food is good and free.
"They literally carve roast beef for the press in Tampa," said Sutton. "I like the Packers and Tampa Bay the best. Oakland and San Francisco are both old-school, outdated and small."
Van Vooren is in agreement, noting Monster Park in San Francisco is a lot like the old Solider Field setup. Looking for your chair? Sorry, stools are where the media plants their butts for three hours taking notes. Ah, but at least the venues there have windows and walls around you.
"The worst auxiliary press box was County Stadium (Milwaukee), because it was outside," said Kendeigh. "I actually watched a game in the snow there, and it was so bad, we all watched the second half of the game on TV."
The Packers eventually gave up playing games at County Stadium, and so did the Brewers. Beauty may be in the eye of the beholder, but when you start breaking down the amenities in the room high above the Frozen Tundra, there is little room to file a complaint.
An attentive press box staff of 15 includes three copy people, three members running stats, and nine assistants doing everything from holding elevators to providing escorts for the coaches who also sit high above Lambeau Field. The media is also privy to an in-house public address announcer, local TV news anchor Tom Milbourn from WLUK. His baritone voice is heard exclusively throughout the press area, detailing each and every play on the field.
Milbourn also provides reminders of press conferences and schedules for the week, injury updates, out-of-town scores and weather reports.
"Lambeau Field has the best in-house PA announcer," said Van Vooren. "He gives the most accurate information. Some of these other places, they don't get the names right, give very limited information, and they get the facts wrong. That does not happen here. I remember in San Diego this year for the preseason, Brandon Manumaleuna … tough name, but their own person butchered it twice, and then just gave up … stopped saying he was catching the ball. And that's their own guy!"
Kendeigh added, "We still go on the road and people can't pronounce Kabeer's (Gbaja-Biamila) name … and he's been in the league seven years! I mean, come on!"
One announcement that Milbourn makes before every game, is a disclaimer to remind everyone that the Lee Remmel Press Box is a working press box, and no cheering is allowed. You would think this goes without saying, but around the league, there are armchair quarterbacks wearing a credential who think they have a game ticket as well.
"Chicago is as blatant as anywhere," said Van Vooren. "And a couple of years ago, there were Green Bay people and Chicago people kind of getting into it in the press box."
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