Cheesehead Origins: Jaime Wegner Goes from Viking Upbringing to Backing the Pack

A classic story of escaping evil and embracing good.

Welcome to Cheesehead Origins, an offseason series geared toward showcasing Packer fans with interesting fandom origin stories! CheeseheadTV is devoted to Packer fans worldwide, and we want to hear (and share) your stories. 

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A couple months back I asked for some people to send me interesting fan stories that I could profile for this series. One of the responses I got was from Jaime Wegner, who has been following me on Twitter for some time now. She mentioned she had grown up a Vikings fan, but is now a diehard Packer fan thanks to her husband.

Well, obviously, I wanted to know more about her background and her continued fandom to this day. Who *wouldn’t* want to spotlight someone who forsook evil for good?!

Jaime lives in Nebraska with her husband and two sons and works a government contracting job. For the last decade and a half she’s been a loyal Packer fan after being raised in a Vikings household.

“I grew up in northeast Nebraska, and the Vikings were the primary NFL team on TV,” she said. “I am pretty sure that’s how my dad became a fan.”

In Nebraska in the 90s, college football (specifically the Cornhuskers) were the top priority for the state’s sports fans. The Huskers routinely trotted out top-level, championship-contending (and winning) teams led by Tom Osborne. Without an NFL team in the state, the Huskers were an easy follow in the spotlight.

But for many, the Vikings are the go-to NFL team due to geography. Jaime’s family watched Vikings games many Sundays, and she got used to regularly gifting her father Husker and Vikings gear for many Christmases and birthdays.

Jaime was surrounded by the Husker and Vikings culture, but wasn’t exactly a massive Vikings fan herself.

“I was busy with typical kid stuff, including my own sports (soccer, volleyball, softball and dance), so I didn’t have much time left to involve myself greatly in anything related to the NFL,” she said. “But I do remember liking Cris Carter, and I remember him being a mentor of sorts to Randy Moss. I remember Warren Moon and Daunte Culpepper.”

What Jaime does NOT remember is the Green Bay Packers. In fact, it wasn’t until she really got into watching the Packers that she even realized the Vikings and Packers were considered bitter rivals. 

When Jaime moved to Omaha for college, she met the man who eventually became her husband. A Navy brat, he’d lived all over the country, but his father was born and raised in the La Crosse, Wisconsin area and brought him up as a Packer fan.

“After I graduated we moved in together,” she said. “I don’t remember exactly how it happened, but I just slowly started watching games with him. The more I watched, the more I enjoyed and really dove into learning about the game.”

Over time, Jaime’s love for the Packers grew considerably, to the point where she became more interested about the sport as a whole. She especially grew attached to NFL football because the players stick around longer than they do in college (at least the good ones0. 

“For a team like the Packers having two Hall of Fame quarterbacks in a row, the consistency has been enjoyable,” she said. 

Jaime follows the sport now more than she ever did for college football, and lives for NFL Redzone when the Packers aren’t playing. On Sundays in the fall, she’ll take her boys outside to play before noon, and once the games begin, football takes over.

“We’ve been regular RedZone watchers for a few years now,” she said. “I actually love when the Packers have a later game so we can take advantage of the early window of games. Love to celebrate wins with a cold Spotted Cow. Obviously we can’t buy them here, but thankfully my father in law keeps us well stocked when he visits.”

Jaime has traveled to Lambeau twice so far: once in 2010 when the Packers beat the Giants to secure their wildcard spot (and eventual Super Bowl win, and the other when the Packers played the Redskins in 2013. 

The first she describes as a “doozy” for her first NFL game.

“It was an amazing game for sure, but I was pretty naive to the whole thing and didn’t get to experience all Lambeau had to offer,” she said. “I enjoyed my second trip a little more. We were able to go through the Hall of Fame and spent a lot more time enjoying Lambeau.”

Having had two children since, it has been difficult to make the time to get to a game, given the distance she would have to travel. But she is hoping to make it back with her husband sometime in the next couple years, ideally before Aaron Rodgers retires.

I asked Jaime how her father, an enthusiastic Vikings fan, feels about her allegiances changing, and she says he’s been a good sport about it all.

“I mean, does he love that I’m a Packers fan? No, but he is pretty chill about it,” she said. “My older sister is really the only one who talks smack about the Packers. She doesn’t even watch much football, so I’ve learned to ignore her.”

What has been great for Jaime is developing her football knowledge to the point where she can now really enjoy talking football with her dad. He’s even joined her for a few games, though Jaime says he’s probably brought the Packers bad luck.

“He came to Arrowhead in 2011 with us and my husband’s family for the Packers’ Chiefs game, where the Packers lost to a Kyle Orton-led team,” she recalled. “He and my mom traveled to Minnesota for a game the following year: another Packers loss. And we also took him to the Vikings/Chiefs preseason game in 2014.”

She says while it can be difficult to be fans of opposing teams, she thinks her transition to following and loving the Packers (and the NFL in general) has actually produced some wonderful memories with her and her father, more so than if she had maintained her prior interest.

As to whether or not her father will join her as a Packer fan…

“I’ve tried converting him, but no such luck thus far,” she said.

This year, Jaime is excited to take advantage of another year with an all-time great in Aaron Rodgers while he’s still playing, and is hoping for the team to finally make it back to the big game. 

Ultimately, she just is glad to be a fan of the greatest franchise in pro sports.

“I feel blessed to be a Packers fan, especially in the Aaron Rodgers era,” she said. “It’s been such a blast to experience some of these wins with my husband especially. I joke that I am a bigger fan than he is (and I’m not sure that statement is false to be honest).”

Jaime has enjoyed many of the ups (mentioning the Hail Mary in Detroit) and downs (mentioning Seattle in the NFC Championship) of Packer fandom in her time following the team, but she appreciates the roller coaster, no matter what sort of ride it takes her on.

“How can you not love it?” she said.

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Thanks to Jaime Wegner for connecting and for taking part in this profile! And congratulations on escaping a miserable existence as a Vikings fan!

 

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Tim Backes is a lifelong Packer fan and a contributor to CheeseheadTV. Follow him on Twitter @timbackes for his Packer takes, random musings and Untappd beer check-ins.

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Comments (2)

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mrtundra's picture

July 07, 2022 at 08:01 am

Of course, she's a Packer fan! Look at that smile! vikings fans don't have those kind of smiles.

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BuckyBadger's picture

July 07, 2022 at 11:35 am

I am usually against almost any time the state takes children from their homes but if they are raising their children to be Vikings fans maybe they shouldn't have kids.

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