NFL 2025 draft coming to Green Bay

Region already planning for hundreds of thousands of visitors
Kevin Passon
Green & Gold Express

Detroit is just days away from hosting the 2024 NFL draft, but there are plenty of Green Bay area officials and residents already looking ahead to 2025.

The 2025 NFL draft will be held April 24-26 in and around Lambeau Field and Titletown.

“The draft has become our biggest offseason event hosted in different cities with spectacular locations across the country, and we are excited to work with the Packers and Discover Green Bay to bring the 2025 NFL draft to Green Bay and iconic Lambeau field,” said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell in making the announcement last year. “With the help of numerous local partners on the ground, our prospects and fans will be treated to an incredible week-long experience that shows off the city of Green Bay and the state of Wisconsin.”

Festivities will include several days of activities throughout Green Bay and will feature the NFL Draft Experience — a massive free football festival — near Lambeau Field to allow fans of all teams to participate and test their football skills, enjoy interactive exhibits and autograph sessions, and take pictures with the Vince Lombardi Trophy. The Draft Experience will be open all three days of the event.

The NFL draft has become one of the biggest sporting events of the year. The 2023 draft in Kansas City welcomed more than 312,000 fans and had more than 54 million viewers over the course of the three-day event.

Green Bay is expecting around 250,000 fans.

“The Packers have a rich and proud history that goes back to the early days of the NFL and are the only community owned team,” said Packers President and CEO Mark Murphy. “That connection to our league’s heritage combined with the great passion Packers fans will bring will make the draft a memorable event for those in attendance and NFL fans watching around the world.”

Brad Toll, president and CEO of Discover Green Bay, said the group is excited to team up with the Packers, community leaders and tourism partners to provide the experience for visiting fans.

“This will be the biggest and most economically significant event in our history,” he said.

Lodging will be at a premium during the event, as there are fewer than 5,000 hotel rooms in the city.

Expect more people to make their residences available on of short-term home rental services like Airbnb and Vrbo.

We’re not just talking in Green Bay. Fans won’t have an issue driving 30 minutes to an hour to stay in hotels or houses in area communities like Manitowoc and Appleton — as well as Oconto Falls and Shawano.

Discover Green Bay is providing a guide to short-term rentals for those who are willing to have others stay in their homes.

Highlights of the guide include an overall review of guidelines, applying for a license and arranging for an inspection, getting a state sellers permit, confirming local requirements (including local room taxes), reviewing your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance, and listing your property.

With a quarter of a million fans anticipated, the economic impact for Green Bay is expected to be roughly $20 million with a statewide impact of roughly $94 million, according to the Green Bay Chamber of Commerce.

In addition to lodging, gas and food, other businesses that could see a positive impact include outdoors activities, arts and cultural events, water sports, entertainment venues, golf courses and other shopping outlets. Wineries, breweries and distilleries will also do well.

Area communities are also planning on how to capitalize on the event.

While discussions have been held at the Shawano Country Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Center, no definite promotions are in the works yet, said Suzanne Wittman, executive director.

As part of the statewide tourism promotional efforts, Wisconsin lawmakers approved spending $2 million to help stage the draft.

Sen. Rob Cowles of Green Bay and Rep. David Steffen of Howard made the request shortly after it was announced Green Bay would host the draft.

“While the event is limited to three days, the lead up to the event is more like a weeks-long commercial for Green Bay and the state of Wisconsin,” Cowles and Steffen wrote.

The money would come out the state’s general fund, but any tax revenue the draft generates would help replenish the money, they added.

“There will be directly measurable results, such as state sales tax and local room tax revenues, and indirect results, such as increased tourism revenue long-term based on the increased exposure of what Wisconsin has to offer to visitors during the draft coverage,” they wrote.

Traffic on all roads in the city as well as those in and out of Green Bay will be impacted.

A regular Packers home game brings about 80,000 people to the community, but the majority of those return home the same day. During the draft, three times as many people will be in Green Bay, and many more will be in the area for more than a day.

Some of the millions of dollars that will flow into the local economy includes the Packers Pro Shop, which is already selling draft day merchandise. Items emblazoned with the 2025 NFL Draft logo range from a $4 pin to a vest or football selling for $160. Shirts, hats, glassware and can coolers are also available.

Of course, the event can’t happen without the help of people behind the scenes as well as volunteers during the event.

The local organizing committee has received countless requests to join committees or be involved with the event.

Organizers will share information for volunteering as specific opportunities arise. Discover Green Bay has an online form for volunteers to complete. Limited employment opportunities will also be available.

More information about the 2025 NFL draft, including venue information, staffing and volunteer opportunities, and other ways to get involved, can be found at or

The Associated Press contributed to this report.