One after another, people came in. Some to seek a cold one, some simply to get out of the cold. A steady snow rained down outside. The thermometer hovered at frightful numbers. Reasonable people might just go to bed. None of them existed here.
Instead, they shouted “Skol!” at random times, chanted “Bring it home!” and shared stories about where they were when
Whether it was here at the long wooden bar, or at Erik the Red’s “Nordic BBQ” joint gashing into a giant turkey leg, or earlier on the concourses of the stadium — which was already surrounded by preliminary construction of NFL hospitality tents — Vikings fans were daring to dream while imaging the mayhem. They were drunk on the possibilities, if not other things.
“If the Vikings play a home Super Bowl, the town will be torn up, pretty much,” said fan Shawn Mattison of Grand Rapids, Minnesota. “There’s a lot of pent-up emotion.”
“Everybody should take off the whole week of work and just party,” said Stacey McNelson of Lind Lakes, Minnesota. “Crazy. It’ll just be crazy.”
No team has ever played a Super Bowl in its home stadium. Just twice has a city hosted the game with an area team involved. The 1979 game in the Rose Bowl featured the Rams. In 1984, the 49ers played on the campus of Stanford University in Palo Alto, California. Both of those came well before this event became a weeklong, all-encompassing event that it has – with zip lines dangling over city streets, outdoor concerts and nightly fireworks.
It also didn’t take place in a city like this, where just hosting the Super Bowl is a historic, prideful event. It took the construction of the glorious $1.12 billion U.S. Bank Stadium to just earn the privilege. The Super Bowl came just once before, in 1992, so everyone here knows that, mainly due to the weather, it isn’t likely to return anytime soon. This is pro