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Section Yellow offers sober Green Bay Packers fans an 'oasis' in a sea of game day alcohol

Group urges supporters to take it 'one game at a time' in state known for excessive drinking


By Jonah Beleckis - October 15,2022


John Plageman loves the Grateful Dead and Phish.


Back around 2009 — about three or four months into sobriety — he wanted to attend a Phish reunion show. But he knew the jam band scene was filled with drugs and alcohol. This weighed on him. How could he keep having fun while staying sober?


Then Plageman found his way to The Phellowship, a group of sober Phish fans. He started volunteering with the group a few years later. Fast forward to a Phish show at Alpine Valley in East Troy in 2019 and it clicked — how could he get something similar at Lambeau Field for Green Bay Packers?


"It's such a simple idea," he said recently on Wisconsin Public Radio’s "Central Time." "But it has such a strong impact and such big support, because there are a ton of Packer fans that are sober that will not go to the games because of the drinking culture."


Section Yellow now has more than 1,200 members in its Facebook group. Volunteers set up at a table near sections 110 and 112 in the stadium concourse. They give away stickers that say "one game at a time," a nod to the phrase common in recovery, "one day at a time."


The group first attended games in 2020, but Tom Doughman, assistant director of counseling and psychological services at St. Norbert College, said it had to pay for two tickets each game.

During the 2021 season, the Packers recognized the group as a charitable organization that could get two passes for each game, instead.




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