Lombardi posterization

Legendary Green Bay Packers head coach Vince Lombardi never had a losing season as a head coach in the NFL, compiling a regular season record 96–34–6 and 9–1 in the postseason for an overall record of 105 wins, 35 losses, and 6 ties.

MOUNT VERNON -- It's been 50 years since Vince Lombardi prowled the sidelines for the Green Bay Packers, winning five NFL championships in seven years.

But the NFL's top prize for winning the Super Bowl still bears the name of the legendary coach, whose gruff demeanor and "iron will" were balanced against his support for equal civil rights for all players.

On Sept. 20-21, the Mount Vernon Players, Knox County's oldest, continuously operating theater troupe, will bring the legendary coach back to life when they present Eric Simonson's play "Lombardi" to the stage.

Lombardi rack card

The play, which debuted on Broadway in 2010, follows Lombardi through a week in the 1965 NFL season as he attempts to lead his team to the championship. A fictional reporter from "Look" magazine comes to town to report on "what makes Lombardi win."

What reporter Michael McCormick finds is far more than football. His reporting reveals complicated human relationships between Lombardi, his wife, Marie, and three of Lombardi's star players -- Paul Hornung, Jim Taylor and Dave Robinson.

During the show, including flashbacks to past years, the audience will learn the true story of Lombardi from a script developed from the award-winning biography "When Pride Still Mattered" by Pulitzer Prize-winning author David Maraniss.

Six local actors will bring the characters to life, including Mansfield's Carl Hunnell as Lombardi, Mount Vernon's Christine Hamilton as Marie and Seth Bennett from Fredericktown as McCormick.

Jim Stoner (Paul Hornung), Kevin Hutchinson (Jim Taylor) and Dimetrius Caldwell (Dave Robinson) portray the three Packers stars, all of whom are now enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, along with their coach.

Stoner is directing the show, which will stage Sept. 20 at 7 p.m. and Sept. 21 at 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. at The Grand Hotel on the Square in Mount Vernon.

Tickets are $10 and can be purchased on-line, on the Mount Vernon Players Facebook page or in Mount Vernon at PackMail, Crickets on Main, Paragraphs Bookstore, and KUDOS Artists Co-Op.

For more information, call 740-504-9399 or e-mail mountvernonplayers@gmail.com.

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