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Super Bowl 52 Fun - Minneapolis, MN

Dear Diary,
It's not everyday the Super Bowl comes to town.

And though I was so hoping for this to be considered a "home game," I cast aside my lingering disappointment over the Vikings' loss to the Eagles to enjoy what is sure to be a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

In the days leading up to the game, the Twin Cities was festooned in related themes, interactive exhibits, live music and delicious regional food favorites.

One Sunday, we boarded the Light Rail and found ourselves at the Super Bowl Live! event at Nicollet Mall.

And thanks to the Mobile Fan Pass app I had previously downloaded, the kids were able to collect "badges" with each completed experience. We discovered Madelyn has a pretty good aim, having successfully thrown footballs through a wall of tires.


They made leaping catches into foam pits.

(The "official" photos paired with my blurred action shots - they both made the catch!)

We took part in a VR quarterback competition, which of course, Landen won.

We also donned ice skates and circled a rink in the middle of the Mall.

And thankfully, the weather cooperated until the sun went down and the wind picked up. We were able to cram in quite a few of the activities set up to celebrate.

Radio and TV stations from across the country and around the world took up residence at the Mall of America. Called "Radio Row," there were many a news segment and interview recorded, and sightings of celebrities were abundant. We saw Doug Flutie, who unfortunately I recognize more from his Dr. Pepper commercials than his football career. He is very frail and petite.

On Friday, February 2, the family met me at my office at the end of the day to check out the event co-sponsored by my employer. There were interactive, illuminated art displays, live performances, bonfires and of course, food and drinks.

The day before the Super Bowl, we found ourselves at the Minneapolis Convention Center for the Fan Experience. I had to purchase tickets (which were very reasonable), and scored passes to get the kids access to the autograph bays. Landen made it his mission to collect as many signatures and meet as many of his heroes as possible.

We waited for autographs. A very kind group of people gave the kids and I wristbands that allowed us to skip ahead in line to be first to meet and collect signatures from famous athletes.

Apparently David Johnson, who plays for the Arizona Cardinals, grew up just across the Mississippi River from Nick's home town.

(Brett Hundley) 

The kids met Vikings great, Kyle Rudolph.

Landen caught a pass thrown by a New Orleans Saints player ...

... and Madelyn learned to tackle.

One thing's for certain - the greatest takeaway from our experiences are the memories we will be talking about for years to come.

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