This past Saturday, seek I sat in the Hyatt McCormick Place Hotel lobby with two anxious fans who were about to fulfill some big dreams. Angela Hasse, viagra 18, of Mt. Prospect and Sean Caselton, 24, of Crystal Lake both won a “meet and greet” with Chicago Bears Right Tackle, Kyle Long, as well as tickets to Sunday’s game vs. the Oakland Raiders through Fanwish.
Fanwish is an app that allows every day people to have extraordinary experiences with their favorite athletes and celebrities – for free. By entering contests on the app, winners have the chance to meet their favorite players, attend sporting events, etc. Users can also purchase particular packages or opportunities if they would prefer a guaranteed experience. Fanwish has already connected fans in Texas and California with their favorite athletes. In fact, Dallas Cowboys Quarterback, Tony Romo recently partnered with the organization. Due to its increasing popularity, Fanwish is looking to expand their reach to fans here in Chicago.
“Kyle Long tweeted about winning a meet and greet with him via a contest on Fanwish, so I entered,” said Caselton. “I am a die-hard Bears fan and my Sunday mood is always based on the outcome of the game; to have the opportunity to meet my favorite player is awesome. I like Long because he’s a good player, he interacts with fans via social media and is good with the media.”
“I agree with all of that but it’s important to mention that he’s cute too,” chimed Hasse, who brought her mother with her to meet Kyle. Caselton brought a childhood friend.
Long arrived around 6 PM and met with the four fans in the lobby for a good 30 minutes. His casual and relaxed attitude made the group comfortable and they shared random tid-bits of information with him; Caselton grew up with a current offensive tackle for Green Bay and Hasse knows Sarah Trestman (former Bears coach, Marc Trestman’s daughter).
Caselton and Hasse also asked questions such as, “How much do you bench?” (More of a clean and jerk guy), “How do you handle social media trolls?” (Sometimes you talk some smack back to them and sometimes you just delete their comments) and “What are your pre-game rituals” (Throw the ball around a little bit/don’t really do any o-line drills and listen to some Waylon Jennings in the locker room to relax). Long also signed memorabilia, snapped pics and even made time for a few Snapchat videos with the winners.
Long has made a name for himself in Chicago since being drafted first-round by the Bears in 2013; he’s a two-time Pro Bowler (2013, 2014) and named to PFWA’s All-Rookie team (2013). He’s also the son of former NFL star and current FOX game day analyst, Howie Long and his brother Chris is currently a Defensive End for the St. Louis Rams.
To learn more about Fanwish and opportunities to win your own unique fan experience, visit their website.