As summer cools down, football season is coming in hot. For purple-blooded Minnesotans, this is an exceptionally exciting year. We’re ready to cheer on the Vikings in their new home! Here’s why I can’t wait for the first snap of the NFL season:
US Bank Stadium
This year, the Vikings will be playing in the incredible new US Bank Stadium. But Vikings fans are not the only ones completely psyched to pay a visit to the beautiful facility this fall. In Goldy’s Locker Room (Level 3, West), I ran into some folks from Idaho, Montana and Ohio talking excitedly about US Bank Stadium. I even met some Packer fans in Rybicki Cheese, Ltd. (Level 3, West) who were anxious for their chance to visit the new home of the Vikings.
Time to raise the Barr. Can you Digg it? Football fans know to expect the unexpected. We can’t get enough of surprising breakthrough players. How will fifth-round draft pick Stefon Diggs amaze us this year? To what new heights will second-year outside linebacker Anthony Barr take the Vikings? I can’t wait to sport the jerseys of these up-and-comers from Vikings Locker Room (Level 1, East), Pro Image Sports (Level 2, North) and Champs Sports (Level 2, East + Level 3, West).
The NFL is an endless source of nail-biting drama, and we can’t wait to see what stories unfold this season. That’s what I love about football: the exhilaration of a new beginning where anything can happen. It was great seeing fans from all over the world count down to that first kickoff with our #PepsiNFLHelmets display in the Atrium (sorry fans, the clock has run out on the helmets for now).
Northerners know there’s nothing like the Vikings/Packers rivalry. Cheeseheads and cheese-graters love the adrenaline rush of a border battle game. As reigning NFC North champions, the Vikings inaugural home opener against the Packers on September 18 is sure to be a thrill.
If your family contains Vikings and Packers fans, pick up a “House Divided” pennant from Rybicki Cheese, Ltd. (Level 3, West).
Minnesota Vikings fans are some of the most dedicated in the nation. I can’t wait to hear “SKOL!” — the famous battle cry of the purple and gold. At Vikings home games, you’ll hear it along with the traditional Gjallarhorn. In August 2016, Mall of America was lucky enough to host the Gjallarhorn in Southeast Court for a great photo opportunity along with Vikings Cheerleaders and alumni player appearances.
Minnesota pride runs deep with the team, as well. Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater* will reportedly be calling “Purple Rain” on the line — a tip of the cap to the Minnesota legend, Prince.
*Update: Our thoughts are with Teddy and we’re all wishing him a speedy recovery.
As football season approaches, I bleed purple. But no matter your team, this NFL season promises to be one for the ages.