Badger fans bring the party to Orlando - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

Badger fans bring the party to Orlando

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Heather Sass and Peyton ready for the game. Heather Sass and Peyton ready for the game.
Holly Leifer poses in front of the big inflatable Bucky Badger in the fan section outside the stadium. Holly Leifer poses in front of the big inflatable Bucky Badger in the fan section outside the stadium.

ORLANDO, Florida (WXOW) – The smell of barbeque in the air, mixed with the scent of oranges.

It's tailgate party time for Wisconsin fans on game day at the Capital One Bowl in Orlando.

Badger supporters from across the country put up with rainy weather to watch the team play.

Alum Glenn Davis, who lives in Texas, has family in Central Florida, said it wasn't a tough call to go to the game. He hasn't been back to Madison in about ten years. "I have the Big 10 Network in Texas where I live. I watch every game, watch the basketball team, the hockey team when I can. So this is a great opportunity."

Badger fans Chris Leifer and his wife Holly drove over from Tampa. They were headed to the Badger Huddle for some brats and beer. Chris said, "It's about being around other Badger fans. You can meet them anywhere in the United States and you're immediately friends. It's great."

"And the nice sunny weather," adds Holly Leifer with a smile. A light steady rain is falling. They make sure to take a picture in front of a giant inflated Bucky Badger as a memory of the game.

Despite the weather, there are smiles and laughs around the Badger Huddle area. Polka music and dancing is there for the doing, along with plenty of food.

Fans are feeding, too, off of the celebratory mood of the other Wisconsinites at the game.

"The energy of the Wisconsin fans," said Alan Sass of Neenah. "Just being away from home during winter, during the holidays. We base our vacations around this.

"It's a tradition now," said Heather Sass, holding the newest member of the family, Peyton, decked out in Badger clothing.

A quick brat, then into Florida Citrus Stadium to watch the game.

 

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