Posted by: Katie | May 11, 2012

Brewer Fever

Shelley, a longtime friend, discusses some of her favorite hobbies and accomplishments. She is a big supporter of the Milwaukee Brewers and tries her best to attend the spring training games that take place in Arizona. Also, Shelley answers questions about running a marathon, participating in the polar plunge, and bucket list items.

1. One thing that stands out about you is your support for the Milwaukee Brewers. When did you start becoming a baseball fan and what is your favorite part about the whole experience of a game?
I started really watching baseball my freshman year of college. Some of my good friends in the dorm were big sports fans, so they would always watch the games. I began to watch the Brewers with them and soon loved watching, knew all the players by heart, and my mood for the day was determined on the results of the game!

There are lots of things I love about being at a baseball game. I love that moment when the players are introduced and the whole stadium is cheering. I love that moment when a players whacks the ball and you just know it’s a home run before you even see where the ball goes. I also love that a baseball game can mean tailgating and having a few drinks with friends beforehand, or it can mean going with my dad or grandpa and really analyzing the game with them.

2. You have visited Arizona just to watch the spring training of the Brewers. Besides watching the games, what have you enjoyed about these trips?

The first time I went to spring training was one of the best times of my life. I will always remember that trip and cherish that I got to share such a great experience with my dad; that trip was all about baseball for us. We wore Brewers apparel every day, all day. The hotel waitress got to know us because we went for breakfast at the same time every day wearing our baseball hats. 🙂

My dad and I went super early to games and he helped me stake out a spot at the railing so we could try to get player autographs and pictures. He was just as excited as me when we got to meet a player! After the games, we would go somewhere for dessert (hey, we were on vacation!) like Sprinkles for a cupcake or to the Sugar Bowl for a sundae. One day, we did go on a mini-adventure to see the desert, but we ended it quickly after seeing a snake!

3. What makes you support the Brewers over any other baseball team? Who are your favorite players?

Well, I’m going to have to say it’s all about being a Wisconsin resident! Seriously though, there is something great about Brewers fans. We don’t have as much money to spend as other teams, but Milwaukee fans are so supportive of the team and we have some great players. Ryan Braun will always be my favorite, because he is such a superstar! Another favorite player of mine is Mat Gamel. He’s finally getting a lot of playing time in the majors this year, but I remember meeting him at spring training when he was in the minors and thought he was a pretty cool guy! Since that was three years ago, I feel like he’s “my guy” and I hope he does really well this year.

4. What players have you met?

When I first went to spring training, I got autographs from nearly the entire 2009 team! The best part is that I got a picture with Corey Hart and Mat Gamel. I have also gone to some autograph signing sessions in Delafield, and I got a couple of autographs when I went to spring training last year. The highlight of the last time I went to spring training though was when my friend and I ran into Logan Schafer at a bar!! It was crazy. He actually approached us because of the shirts we were wearing! My dream is to meet Ryan Braun someday, but that is definitely going to be hard to do!

5. You have run a marathon in the past. When did you decide to start running?

I decided to start running in my second semester of my freshmen year at UW-Madison. There was a workout facility there, called the Serf, that I used to go to with some dorm friends. At first I went on the elliptical or did other workouts, but something clicked one day and I decided I wanted to try running. At first I literally could not run more than two minutes. I still remember being super excited when I could finally run 15 minutes straight, so at that point I decided to aim for a 5K (which is 3.1 miles). I did quite a few of those, and when that wasn’t enough, decided to try for a half marathon. Then, I felt like I had to go all the way and do a full marathon!

6. What are some of the races you have entered? What methods do you use to train?

I have done many 5K races, which mostly include races in Madison. By far, my favorite 5K is at Miller Park each summer in July! I also have done the Crazy Legs race in Madison, which is an 8K (5 mile) race. My first half marathon (13.1 miles) was in 2009, which I ran in Green Bay. That summer I did another half marathon in Madison. Then, the following year, I decided to do the full marathon!! I have done other races scattered here and there, but they all blur together a little bit! My most recent race was in February, when I did a 15K in Green Bay. In May, I will be doing the same half marathon that I ran when I did my first half marathon!

To train, I use a program that is on where you can personalize your plan. I have learned over the years that I can tweak the plan to fit my schedule, which took me a while to learn. Now that I am living in Green Bay, I also like to take advantage of Saturday morning training runs that are available here for people who are training for the half marathon!

7. Running a marathon was something that was on your bucket list. What are other things on your bucket list?

Oh, a ton of stuff! First of all, I feel like I won’t have lived a full life if I don’t get to see the whole world before I die. I really want to go to Iceland, but that’s just #1 on my list. I also really want to ride in a hot air balloon; it’s something I’ve wanted to do forever. All in all, I just want to look back on life and feel like I didn’t miss out on anything and that I made a difference in somebody’s life.

8. Are you hoping to cross any of those items off your list anytime soon?

Well I definitely want to start traveling soon, but I’m holding off until I get a job and have rounded up some time off! As for the hot air balloon, my secret wish is that I will get proposed to in my first hot air balloon ride. So I’m okay with waiting for a little while on that one (but not TOO long!). 😉

9. You seem to like trying new things and even participated in the polar plunge. Explain what that is for those that don’t know. What was the experience like?

Oh yikes. The Polar Plunge! It’s a fundraiser for the Special Olympics, so a great cause, that I believe occurs in many difference cities in Wisconsin. I did it for two years in a row in Madison. It’s where you jump into the lake when it’s FREEZING cold!!! They have to break the ice to create an opening to jump into! I felt like such a tough person when I did it, but that feeling of ice cold water is not something I am eager to feel again. I think my days of plunging might be over… I would happily donate to the Special Olympics, but perhaps in ways that don’t involve the bone-chilling lake water in February!




  1. Have you considered adding some relevant links to the article? I think it will really enhance viewers understanding.

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