Screening recommended along Ray Nitschke Field
By Kevin Boneske
ASHWAUBENON – A plan for another Green Bay Packers practice field screen to prevent people from spying from the Resch Expo’s second floor was recommended Tuesday, Dec. 1, by the village’s Site Plan Review Committee and Plan Commission.
Building inspector Katie Lima said the screening system for Ray Nitschke Field would extend from the north side of the Don Hutson Center along Armed Forces Drive to the northeast corner of the field.
However, Lima said the screening for Nitschke Field would be raised and lowered along poles 23 feet high – 10 feet lower than for Hinkle Field – with the poles spaced approximately 30 feet apart and the existing 8-foot chain-link fence remaining in place.
“The idea is that this is that same sort of thing with the poles with the screening that can be pulled up during closed practices,” she said.
A condition of approval for the screening at Hinkle Field – requiring the screens to be lowered when closed practices are not taking place – was also recommended for Nitschke Field.
The Resch Expo, built on the site of the former Brown County Veterans Memorial Arena, is scheduled to open in January.
Trustee Gary Paul said the screening system is kind of a duplication of Hinkle Field to the west of the Hutson Center.
“I think what we’ve done there to please the organization looks fairly pleasing,” he said. “I have not seen it with the screening up yet. I don’t want to see it until we have a player on the field, and when that player leaves, I want to see it down.”
Packers spokesman Aaron Popkey said black fabric screens are being used instead of green for Hinkle Field because “green fabric you can actually see through a little bit for some reason, so we went with black.”
Popkey said Nitschke Field would use the same type of system, but with different specifications for the height.
“As we were doing some planning for the future, (the Packers) determined they wanted to use both fields,” he said. “As we were doing some construction on Nitschke to do some upgrades, that’s when we decided (to say), ‘Hey, let’s go ahead and talk about putting these screens in now.’”
Popkey said the screening would only be attached to the poles during the season, after which it would be put in storage.
Because Nitschke Field is located in Ashwaubenon’s Sports & Entertainment District, the screening system recommendation is being forwarded to the village board for final approval at its Dec. 15 meeting.