Monday, May 25, 2009

They Are Almost Playing Our Song

The Minnesota Rouser

Minnesota, hats off to thee,To thy colors true we shall ever be,

Firm and strong, united are we.Rah! Rah! Rah! for Ski-U-Mah,

RAH! RAH! RAH! RAH!Rah for the U. of M.
M-I-N-N-E-S-O-T-A!Minnesota! Minnesota!Yeaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah GOPHERS!
Those are the lyrics of the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers fight song.
Hardly anyone knows what the lyric, "Ski-U-Mah" means. I don't. I might have once.
After nearly thirty years of playing football games in the downtown Mpls. HHH Metrodome, the Gophers will be back on campus this fall in their new stadium. I am usually not happy when we are paying to build more stadiums, but this one I like.
They should never have moved football off the campus. In 1982 the Gophers began playing their games in the then new downtown Metrodome. The abandoned campus Memorial stadium
nicknamed "the brickyard", sat vacant until it was torn down in 1992. An aquatics center was built on that site.
We drove through campus yesterday and I was impressed with this imposing, tucked-in edifice. It is beautiful. They have installed the maroon and gold seats that spell MINNESOTA. I can imagine sitting in the stadium on a nice, sunny fall day. I can imagine what it will be like to park.
This new stadium has everything. Luxury suites, stunning views of the city skyline, towering bleachers. The only thing is doesn't have is beer. The legislature and the Board of Regents couldn't agree on the rules. University administration did not want beer sold in the bleachers where underage students might have access. Alumni groups wanted beer sold in the box seats and luxury suites. The Governor maintained beer should be available to everyone over 21, not just those in the high priced seats. They couldn't work out a compromise. There will be no beer this year. Couldn't they have put the student seats in the upper decks and kept that dry? Everyone knows "in heaven there is no beer."
It is named the TCF Bank Stadium. Everyone sells naming rights to the highest bidder. Good thing is wasn't AIG who kicked in the most money. It might have been interesting if the donor had been Summit Beer.
The other new stadium under construction in Minnespolis, the Twins baseball stadium, is named Target Field. We also have a Target Center where our NBA team plays.
I didn't have my camera yesterday so you must settle for going to the website architects sketch.

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