Ah, this is how memories are made.
Tom and I arrived in De Pere, Wisconsin late on June 7 and stayed the night. Others staying at the Sleep Inn were also talking about the concert or wearing Beatles t-shirts. Rooms near Lambeau Field were astronomically priced, even though we booked well in advance. We headed up to Green Bay just before 5 PM so we could meet Betty Grim who had reserved a free parking spot for us at a private residence nearby. A big thank you to Betty and Erin for your follow-through and hospitality.
I hadn't seen Betty since high school so it'd been over 50 years. Dad used to pick her up and we'd all go roller skating at a rink in Germantown, Ohio. Dad and Mom were great friends with her family, too.
Bill, Betty and Tom
Photo Credit: Mary Lindsley
We arrived and found a parking spot about 15 minutes before Betty and her group (Mary Lindsley, Sue Trams and Becky Kallio, all of Appleton) arrived. We walked to Lambeau Field together. "Sue bought our tickets the first day they were available," said Betty. "I think she waited at least half an hour online." Even so, she couldn't get all four tickets together.
T-shirts and other merchandise was available for top dollar. T-shirts were $45 at this booth.
Apparently Sgt. Pepper heard about the concert and came.
We found our seats (high in the nose-bleed section) just after 6 PM so we had a two hour wait. A copy of my ticket is posted at the end of this blog.
The Jumbotron showed this message prior to the concert. Anyone know what happened if you sent a text?
The place began filling quickly. The concert was sold-out. 50,000 were expected.
The concert began!
The Jumbotron showed pictures of a young McCartney and the Beatles.
Paul's definitely aging ... but aren't we all? His 77th birthday was just ten days after this concert.
His voice, too. is not at all what it was. But the brilliant songs are just as bright and enjoyable as ever. My only disappointment: he didn't sing Yesterday. I heard him sing it in August 1966 when I attended the Beatles concert at Crosley Field in Cincinnati. Click here for that blog.
McCartney's Hoffner "violin" base is world famous.
The acoustic set was phenomenal. Paul sang Blackbird and others.
We all sang along to Hey Jude.
Paul played George Harrison's Something on a ukulele.
Live and Let Die was explosive. The fireworks lit up the place. See it here.
Tom and I decided to sit tight while some of the traffic dissipated. Clean up began immediately. Crews began by stacking chairs on the field. The concert ended just before 11 PM (McCartney played nearly three hours non-stop) and I suppose we stayed in the stands until 12:30 AM.
Quite a night. Worth the price and worth the drive!
1. My ticket ...
2. Lots of videos of the concert have already been posted on YouTube. To see a list, click here.
3. The Green Bay Press Gazette wrote a number of excellent articles about the concert, both before and after. Each is worth reading. Here's one I love.
4. Finally, here's information on the Freshen Up tour and a set list of the songs that were performed.