If the Friday Night Lights at the Vikings football field could be turned green for Patriot Night, they’d do it. The whole city is invited to “go green” for Friday’s home game when the Vikings take on the Michigan City Wolves. But there will be plenty of red, white, and blue as well.
Patriot Night is when good old hometown football is enveloped in American pride. When football players rush the fields with American flags before they play, and when the 713th Indiana Army National Guard drops a Blackhawk Helicopter at the field for children and families to explore in awe.
The Indiana Patriot Guard with a MAT-V combat vehicle, Folds of Honor, and Indiana’s Fallen Heroes Program all will attend.
Check out the 2018 Patriot Night photo gallery!
“This Program was started by Billy Baldwin of Valparaiso a few years ago and has grown exponentially,” said CW2 Kevin Stewart (RET), ENG/ORD/INARNG. First responders are among those who will be recognized, in addition to veterans and those currently serving in the military.
“We have several local fire and police, along with ambulance services attending. Life flight will also have a helicopter on the field. This was such a success last year, we are expecting a multitude of people to support again. We also have the Michigan City High School Marine Corp ROTC Color Guard doing the presentation of colors,” Stewart said.
Veterans and emergency personnel will be admitted to the game for free.
The Valparaiso High School Varsity Singers will perform the national anthem, and Major Vincent Gino Georgetti Commander, Indiana National Guard, will do the honorary coin toss.
The Varsity game starts at 7 p.m. Friday, but plan to be there early for all the action before the game starts.
Here’s a full schedule of events:
6:00 Pre-game VHS Band at Concession stands
6:10 LutheranAIR Helicopter Landing (Centerfield of Fenced of Varsity Baseball)
6:30 Announce: Honorees to the South Track Area
6:40 Teams leave field6:40 MCHS ROTC to South end of field
6:40 50’ Flag unveiled on field
6:45 Patriot Guard w/Motorcycles flag line with flags around track
6:41 VHS Band perform: "VHS School Song" (once played and then Sung)
6:43 Announce: “Please stand for the Presentation of Colors”
6:44 VHS Band performs: “It’s a Grand Old Flag” (as Color Guard
marches to 50 yard line)
6:45 Blackhawk Flyover
6:49 Honorees line up on the field along lane 1 of the track
6:54 Teams return to the field from locker room
6:56 VHS Football team runs on the field and joins the Honorees
6:57 Kurt Felsman is introduced to sing the National Anthem
6:58 Kurt Felsman performs the National Anthem
6:58 VHS Band performs: “Posting of Colors” (as Color Guard marches
from the field)
6:58 50’ Flag Removed from field, Patriot guard parks motorcycles and
6:59 Blackhawk Landing on baseball field
6:59 Explosive (EOD) recovery robot presents the game ball by bringing it to center field
6:59 VVQBC: Reads: Bravery Dialogue from 50 yard line
6:59 Mock Coin Toss Dignitary: Major Vincent Gino Georgetti
Commander, Indiana National Guard
Halftime: 5 minutes before Kickoff, Blackhawk will Leave
End of 3rd qtr or 4th qtr Blackhawk will do final flyover on way back to base.