Chicago Bears Ladies Night

Taking the locker room tour to the next level...

Taking the locker room tour to the next level…

Did you know that 46% of the NFL’s fan base is female?  To further that, cialis sale did you know that the Chicago Bears have the number 1 female fan base?  If you’re a Chicago Bears fan, seek there’s no denying that our fan base is one of the biggest (and best in the NFL) and seeing as the Bears organization clearly appreciates us, advice it makes sense that they continue to host and market their team to multiple audiences.

On Monday, October 6th, the Chicago Bears hosted their Meijer Football 101 event geared toward the female fan at Soldier Field. The annual event drew more than 700 females to the field for a night dedicated to the Chicago Bears legacy and the women (and men) that love it.

If you have never been to this ladies night extravaganza, you will definitely want to consider attending next year. Here are some highlights and recap from the event below:

I enjoy attending BearsFB101 event at Soldier Field because I get the opportunity to visit an iconic stadium without the craziness and crowds of a game day Sunday (or men, for that matter).  Vendors such as Meijer were on hand – providing goodies to sample.  With the event being in October this year, Bear’s Care (Chicago Bears Charities) sold t-shirts promoting breast cancer awareness and initiatives. Most notably, domestic violence support groups passed out pamphlets and provided support group information.  In lieu of recent events surrounding the NFL, their players and domestic abuse, I found this to be a necessary and honorable addition to the event. It was also a nice that the event was held in October this year as October is the awareness month for both domestic violence and breast cancer.

It was tough for us not to rush the field.

It was tough for us not to rush the field.

Women of all demographics were in attendance and their favorite apparel was in full force. With the purchase of a ticket to the event, women also received a swag bag – ranging in goodies such as a 2014 Bears Yearbook to a mini hand wallet! Apparel stores inside the United Club were also open, enabling female fans to pick-up the latest gear. (Guilty as charged.)

Since my cousin was a rookie to the event, I made sure that we took a tour of the field and equipment room first (since it is my favorite part).  We stopped for pictures along the 100 level concourse as our guide elaborated on the long standing history of Soldier Field and then we were led down into the Bears locker room.

Equipment coaches were on hand with a demo table – showing off gear in the middle of the locker room.  We also got the opportunity to see the NFL breast cancer pink gloves and cleats on display along with traditional game day items. Majority of the lockers were empty but a couple of the most popular players lockers were donned with gear and ready for photos.

(And if you waited in line, you could even try on pads and equipment to see what it really feels like to be a Bear on game day.)

Picture from the North End ZoneFrom the locker room, we headed through the tunnel out onto the field. Even though this wasn’t my first rodeo, I was still extremely excited to be on the field again and am still amazed by the vastness which is Soldier Field.  It overwhelms me every time and I can’t imagine how it would feel to be out there every game day.

We missed autograph signing due to the tour and shopping but managed to sneak in a quick picture with former Bear, Anthony Adams (he was there to emcee the Family Feud Portion of the BearsFB101 q&a panel). He said that while it was his first time attending, he loved what he’d seen thus far.  But of course, why wouldn’t he – I mean, who doesn’t love being a former pro-athlete hanging out in a room full of ladies.

As tours and autograph signing wrapped-up, women were invited to the workshop session where WBBM News Radio 780’s Zach Zaidman and Tom Thayer emceed a panel of Bears players such as Lamarr Houston, Shea McClellin, Ryan Mundy and Willie Young.

The panel started with a little bit of tape and some highlights of big plays the guys had thus far this season.  After the highlight reel, female fans were randomly selected to participate in the Family Feud style Bears/Football 101 game.  The ladies defeated the players by showcasing their knowledge of tricky Bears trivia (for example the ladies named which former Bear players went on to be coaches with the highest winning percentages – and note, Ditka is not #1 on that list.)

fb101

After the little game concluded, the Q&A portion of the evening began. Beyond the questions of “Do you have tattoos; can you show us where they are?” and multiple dance parties, there were also some great hard hitting questions such as: “How do you plan to move forward after the heartbreaking start to the season” or “Our team has a history of great leadership, how do you plan to be a leader for the rookies and next generation of players?” The guys had great responses and

genuinely cared about their team, their city and most importantly, their fans.

My takeaway?

Like I have mentioned previously, this was not my first Ladies Night but obviously it was so much fun that I had to come again (and even bring my cousin)!  I mentioned this in my review last year, but again I stress that this event is really a great opportunity to get to hang out out Soldier Field and interact with the players – no matter your level of football knowledge. Trust me, you don’t have to be a football fanatic to appreciate an event of this caliber. From novices to experts, we’re all there to celebrate football and our Bears!

My only gripe is that the event is still labeled as Football 101 – I definitely think the Bears could take it to the next level and offer a few “basic” and “advanced” courses. Maybe two ladies nights instead of one with one for vets and one for novice female fans? Or maybe just some break-out sessions during Ladies Night?  I did like that they ran some tape and talked with players about big plays but I think that could easily be elaborated on. I also want to know when they’ll let us ladies out there on the field to run a few plays of our own (a girl can dream).

0 comments
Ashley Erin Sellers at Chicago Bears Football 101 Ladies Night

Finally the NFL and the Chicago Bears have realized what we’ve known for a long time:  female football fans exist! With the NFL’s recent onslaught of improved and relevant marketing initiatives geared toward the female demographic, medicine female fans should appreciate the fact that teams and the league have finally begun to realize we respond to different messaging.

An example of how to cater to the female fan was on full display when the Chicago Bears hosted their Meijer Football 101 event on Tuesday night at Soldier Field. The annual event drew more than 700 female fans to the field for a night dedicated to the Chicago Bears legacy and the women that love it.

If you’ve never been to this gathering of Bears female fans, you will definitely want to put it on your radar for next year.  Here’s why:

SDI Founder, Monica Murphy-Vargas sampling Absolut Tune

Women enjoyed taking in the sights of Soldier Field without the normal craziness and crowds of a game day Sunday (or men, for that matter).  Vendors ranging from Absolut to Verizon Wireless were on site for sampling and product information.

Women of all demographics were in attendance and their favorite apparel was in full force.  Apparel stores inside the United Club were also open, enabling female fans to pick-up the latest gear.

Some women donned jerseys (we saw: Forte, Cutler, Marshall, Urlacher and even a couple of Knox) and others took their fashion fandom to a whole new level. Sara of Crystal Lake has made the trek to Soldier Field for Football 101 over six times and she came prepared with her very own “#34 Sweetness stilettos”.  Talk about the best Sportsanista look of the night!

Sara’s “Sweetness” Stilettos

Tours of the Bears locker room and Soldier Field concourse were also highlights of the evening.  While we passed on the autographs (sorry rooks), we weren’t going to miss a tour of iconic Soldier Field.

As we passed along the 100 level concourse, we stopped for pictures as our guide took questions from fans. My personal favorite: Why doesn’t the Chicago Park District fix this field already? Afterward, we were led down into the Bears locker room.  I was as giddy as a school girl knowing that all the great Bears have walked in the same setting and dressed for game day.

Equipment coaches were also on hand with a demo table – showing off their gear in the middle of the locker room and almost all the lockers were empty – except for Brandon Marshall’s – with full gear on display for viewing… and modeling of course.

Clearly future WR material

From the locker room, we headed through the tunnel out onto the field.  It was breathtakingly overwhelming, I could never imagine what it would feel like on game day… stadium packed, lights on running out onto that massive field (that always appears much smaller to the viewer).

Although you couldn’t pass the yellow rope, being on the field and looking up into the stands was a view I will never forget.  (Also, I give Forte mad props for running the field – five yards doesn’t seem like much on TV but when you’re on the field you realize that MAN, it is a lot.)

We had the pleasure of meeting new Bears sideline reporter, Lyndsay Petruny. The Pittsburgh native recently made the move to Chicago and is now a co-host on the Chicago Bears Network (CBN) new entertaining digital program, Inside the Bears as well as a reporter for Bears GameDay Live that airs on Sunday mornings at 10:30 a.m. on FOX32News.

Ashley Erin Sellers, Lyndsay Petruny, Monica Murphy Vargas

I can’t help but think the Bears are catering to more women with programming like Inside the Bears. A perfect dose of lifestyle entertainment and insider access with Bears news, this is a weekly must-hit and one of the new digital programs the Bears have launched on their owned and operated Chicago Bears Network which is produced in house at the studios in Halas Hall.

“It’s been great walking around here tonight among these passionate female fans and I’m excited because many women have come up to me and recognized me from Inside the Bears, which is great to see that women are watching,” said Petruny. “We’ve done some great segments, some really heartfelt stuff that fans will love. We just wrapped up an interview with Virginia McCaskey, we’ve talked to William “the Fridge” Perry, we talk to fans on the street…it’s great to see that fans are watching.”

After the tours and autograph signing commenced, women were invited for the Meijer Bears Football 101 workshop where Jeff Joniak and Tom Thayer emceed a panel of rookies and surprise guest, Josh McCown

Beyond the questions of “Boxers or briefs?” and “Show us your touchdown dance!” (along with repeated screams for Jon Bostic to “TAKE OFF HIS SHIRT!”) there were some great questions that helped further female football knowledge like, “Who does your playing style resemble/emulate?”, “What is a west coast offense; do we have one?” and “How have you prepared for the NFL?”.

One of my favorite questions of the night was geared to McCown and it obviously touched on the Cutler injury debacle and McCown’s recent victory against the Packers.  McCown was poised and classy with his response reiterating that while he never wants to see a player injured, he’s excited about his opportunity and hopes continue to be a team player and contribute to a winning Bear’s team.  (He also claims there is no “bromance” with Cutler – as he’s not sure how to define that term – and while yes, they are friends, it is strictly a working relationship on the field.)

Jon Bostic

As a first time attendee, I can honestly say even as an avid and aware female Bears fan, I think this event is a good bet for any woman that loves the Bears. You don’t have to be a football fanatic to appreciate an event of this caliber. Not only do you get access to areas of Soldier Field that most fans can only dream of, attendees get the chance to really connect with the team and the brand along with hundreds of fellow females that share your passion.

While I know the event is labeled as Football 101 – I definitely think the Bears could take it to the next level and offer a few basic and advanced courses to cater to both female novice fans and aficionados. Once the Bears and the NFL realize that they must take their marketing message to women even further – that one blanket message to her won’t cut it – then I think the opportunity to host truly impactful female targeted events that actually move the needle, will be a reality.

0 comments
back to top