Packers using robots to connect with fans virtually

Published: Oct. 20, 2020 at 3:06 PM CDT
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - Some Green Bay Packers players spent their off day today visiting Aspiro in Green Bay, virtually.

It’s part of the team’s new game plan to connect with fans during the pandemic.

And robots are the key to making it happen.

Player engagement in the community is a longstanding Packers tradition.

“We typically have about 1,200 appearance requests a year, we do around 800-900, that we do throughout the community, obviously with Covid this is a different year,” says Cathy Dworak, Packers Director of Community Outreach.

So the Packers had to think outside the box, which led them to robots.

“How could we engage our players in a different way in the community and talked with some players about it, did some research and decided they can be at home and still connect with people, whether it’s at Aspiro, last week we were in Kenosha and went to a boys and girls club there, we visited some cancer patients as well,” says Dworak.

Dworak says the robots are from a New York company.

They connect to WiFi and allow the player at home to use their phone or laptop to control it and be on the screen to communicate with fans.

Today’s virtual visit at Aspiro by quarterback Tim Boyle and defensive lineman Tyler Lancaster is deeply appreciated.

“Covid has been hard on all of us, I’m sure you agree, and one of the things we have to recognize is people with disabilities, it’s even been harder, a lot of things we take for granted every day like jumping in the car and going to the store, they can’t do, a lot of folks with disabilities don’t have those resources, so having something like this, where they’re interacting and actually engaging is vitally important, so it’s been fantastic,” says Lincoln Burr, Aspiro President.

The Packers robots, controlled by players, have upcoming visits in Wausau and Madison.

“Fans want to see our players and fans want to connect, and so do our players,” says Dworak.

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