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Bringing the Oscars to Green Bay

Since the first Oscars ceremony in 1929, the buzz and pageantry that surround the annual Academy Awards ceremony have belonged to the city of Los Angeles. And over the years, members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences have resisted suggestions to move all or part of the awards ceremony east, to New York City.

But the excitement of the Oscars ceremony has prompted another nomination for a change of venue -- this time, from a most unexpected region of the United States. Charles Monroe-Kane of Wisconsin Public Radio reports on Green Bay's unlikely bid to bring cinema's most glamorous evening to America's heartland.

The main reason, Monroe-Kane says, is that the city's beloved Green Bay Packers professional football team didn't make it past the first round in the 2002-2003 National Football League playoffs.

"This leaves (Packers' home stadium) Lambeau Field open," Monroe-Kane says. "And I'm thinking, 'Why not fill it with the stars for the Oscars ceremony?'"

His reasoning falls on three points: The people of Green Bay are, in comparison with much of the rest of the nation, very well-educated. Also, Chicago is only three hours away. And lastly? "We all watch television. So, you know, we are quite up to date."

"Granted, Green Bay is no Hollywood," he says. "But then again, to folks here, Hollywood is no Green Bay... Let's just skip the fight between New York and L.A. -- keep the Oscars real, and bring 'em to Green Bay."

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