When I sat down to write this blog, I gotta’ be honest…I didn’t know where to start! What is my FAVORITE vacation memory in Wisconsin? Wisconsin obviously means a lot to me because of all my Green Bay Packer experiences, but since starting up the Gilbert Brown Foundation (GBF), I’ve been able to see a lot more of what Wisconsin has to offer. In an effort to raise money for GBF, I’ve formed some great relationships along the way with several campgrounds in Wisconsin through the Wisconsin Association of Campgrounds Owners (WACO). Traveling to campgrounds throughout the state not only demonstrated the generosity of the people of Wisconsin, but made for some great memories for me and my family.
With all those trips, it was tough to come up with a single memory, so I decided to write about two types of experiences instead. Festivals are always a good time, and Wisconsin is full of them. I mean, you got Summerfest in Milwaukee, Oktoberfest in La Crosse, and Cranfest in Warrens. Festivals mean good music, good food, and good times, so any time I have the opportunity to bring together a festival and the Gilbert Brown Foundation, I jump on it! Our offices are located in the little ol’ town of Ettrick, Wisconsin where they host an annual “Ettrick Fun Days.” I got additional space at the Ettrick Business Center and created “The Graveyard” to host events for the GBF. Together with the help of the Ettrick Lions Club, we hosted events like the kiddie tractor pull, a football camp and a motorcycle ride where I got to show off my hog. Yea, you know I liked that! In the fall Cranfest rolls around and my family and I stay at Jellystone Park. My daughter Jada gets to spend time with her favorite lil bear “Boo Boo” and as a dad that makes me feel pretty dang good.
So what’s even better than a festival with my family? How about a car show, with my family, at a campground…all while I raise money for the Gilbert Brown Foundation. Now that’s what I’m talking about! My favorite pastime would have to be attending car shows. I love seeing a car like a Mopar and how well it’s been taken care of. Or checking out a new ride like the Challenger and seeing what the owner has done to make it their own. Teaming up with Wilderness Campground and hosting a car show in Montello gave me the opportunity to pass my favorite activity down to my kids, while bringing in some change for the good of the cause.
I can’t wait to see what the next Wisconsin adventure will bring…and if you and your family want to make some memories with me this summer, check out what activities the Gilbert Brown Foundation has planned on our website.
Gilbert Brown is a former nose tackle for the Green Bay Packers. He played 125 games for the team, recording 292 tackles including 7 sacks. Dubbed "The Gravedigger," Brown was a major defensive part of the 1996 Packers team that won Super Bowl XXXI. His 15 playoff games for the green and gold is the second most in franchise history. Brown is currently the head coach of the La Crosse Spartans of the Indoor Football League.