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mnjamie
09-03-2005, 07:28 AM
He was in Seattle today working hard, doing his research for a new stadium.

Here's the link:


http://www.startribune.com/stories/510/5594785.html

natethegreat
09-03-2005, 08:11 AM
this is awesome, you can ask for much more of an owner, i really like the seahawks stadium and if wilf says our new one could be better that stadium would be unbelievable, zygi is the man

audioghost
09-03-2005, 08:16 AM
"natethegreat" wrote:

this is awesome, you can ask for much more of an owner, i really like the seahawks stadium and if wilf says our new one could be better that stadium would be unbelievable, zygi is the man

This is true, I was a Zygi doubter initially, but I love what he's done since he's taken over....Zygi is, in fact, Da Man!

akvikefan89
09-03-2005, 09:15 AM
Awesome! Ziggy is da man!

michaelmazid
09-03-2005, 09:34 AM
Ziggy is the biggest pimp ever. The Vikings aint going nowhere EVER.

singersp
11-29-2005, 02:01 PM
Vikings: Saying No Way to the Cleveland Way

Mark Craig, Star Tribune
Last update: November 26, 2005 at 8:31 PM

Art Modell laughed softly at the irony of the question. After all, who was he to offer advice to Vikings owner Zygi Wilf, or any other owner trying to resolve a poor stadium situation?

“I’m hardly the one to talk to, given my history,� Modell, the former Cleveland Browns and Baltimore Ravens owner, said by phone this week. “Given the fact that I loved Cleveland, lived there for 35 years, was president of the Cleveland Clinic. My wife [Pat] was involved in every charity known to man. My kids went to school there. …

“And yet I still had to move my team to Baltimore. Nobody in their right mind should believe I wanted to leave Cleveland. I had no other choice. �

On the field, only one game separates the Vikings (5-5) and Browns (4-6), who were reincarnated as an expansion team in 1999 after lying dormant from 1996 to ’98. Off the field, the gap between Modell’s desperate final days in Cleveland in 1995 and Wilf’s determined start here in 2005 is enormous.

The irony, of course, is Modell was an insider who abandoned his community, while Wilf, a New Jersey real estate developer, is an outsider who states unequivocally that he will not move or sell the Vikings.

“My motivating factor is to win championships, not to find the best venue that could make me the most money,� Wilf said. “That’s not an overriding factor. The Twin Cities area is a dynamic growing community. The potential here is great.�

Kicker Matt Stover, the last of the original Browns to play 10 seasons as a Baltimore Raven, remembers hearing rumors the Browns might move.

“We knew Art was getting beat up pretty good by the politicians,� Stover said. “But I never gave the rumors a second thought. It was like, 'The Cleveland Browns are going to move? Yeah, right.’ �

Few people outside Modell’s circle of advisors knew of his dire financial straits. Modell lost the Indians as primary tenant for Cleveland Stadium, which he maintained for the city at his own expense, and was overspending in the early years of NFL free agency.

“When Art signed Andre Rison before the 1995 season, Andre wanted all of his $5 million signing bonus up front,� said Kevin Byrne, senior vice president of public relations in Cleveland and now Baltimore. “Art didn’t have it. So he went to the bank and they said no. Then he went to a second bank, a third bank and a fourth bank. They all said, 'No, your debt is too great.’ Finally, the fifth bank said yes.

“For those of us internally, that’s when we knew something was wrong.�

Modell never told fans that if he didn’t get immediate financial help he would have to accept Baltimore’s offer of a new stadium, which was wrapped neatly and presented by Maryland politicians as Modell’s perfect financial parachute. Not going public is something for which Browns fans will never forgive Modell.

“You’re damn right I never went public,� Modell said. “I had promises that were made to me by city hall, county commissioners. And they did not deliver on their promises. It was a primary act of betrayal. And they have the nerve to run around saying I didn’t treat them well.

“Because I was on the verge of bankruptcy, I was not going to use my situation to blackmail the steelworker in Youngstown [Ohio] to get a new stadium. That was not the game I wanted to play.�

•••

Wilf is frustrated by a lack of dialogue with the state on the joint stadium proposal with Anoka County. But he sees no parallel between his situation and Modell’s 10 years ago.

The biggest difference is the financial strength of the Vikings’ ownership group, which includes Wilf’s longtime business partners Alan Landis and David Mandelbaum.

While Modell had to borrow all but $125,000 to buy the Browns for $4 million in 1961, Wilf’s group bought the Vikings for $600 million and had to prove to the league that it also has the means to sustain the team in the Metrodome.

Wilf is offering to spend $280 million toward a $675 million stadium to be built in Anoka County. The agreement with Anoka County commissioners calls for the county to contribute $280 million through a three-fourths of a percent county-wide sales tax and the state to chip in $115 million.

The Vikings and Anoka County are asking the state for an exemption to the law requiring a referendum to approve the sales tax. The state has not responded.

The Vikings’ lease at the Metrodome expires in 2011. The Twins, who also are asking for a new stadium, are without a lease as talks of contraction loom again in 2006.

The Twins have a deal with Hennepin County and also are asking for a referendum exemption. Many believe the Vikings should wait their turn behind the Twins. Wilf doesn’t understand why, since both teams already have similar agreements with their respective counties.

“How can the governor, if he’s going to consider the Twins, not consider us?� Wilf said. “There’s no difference. We’re asking for them to endorse what the county [government] voted on. Our county voted on it two years ago. The Twins have only done this the last six months.

“I’ve always been a proponent of [stadiums for the] Gophers, Twins and Vikings. … Everyone says wait. Wait for what? We’re asking for the same thing. That’s where the frustration comes. I just don’t understand this.� On the other side of the stadium issue, Ron Holch, head of the Taxpayers Against an Anoka County Vikings Stadium, doesn’t understand why “the richest men on the planet can take away our resources for their fun.�

Holch said the law requiring a referendum was put in for a reason, “and this is the perfect example.� His group does not accept the argument that stadiums generate enough jobs and tax base to offset the cost of construction.

“I don’t want the Vikings to leave, but at the same time I want good school systems, good roads, safety, police and firemen,� Holch said. “We don’t have that right now. So why should we just give our money to a billionaire? Let’s all vote on it.�

•••

Modell claims he was assured the Browns would be taken care of after Cleveland built new stadiums for the Indians and Cavaliers using a county-wide “sin tax� on sales of alcohol and tobacco. The city not only built those stadiums, it also built the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and a science center.

As time approached to take care of the Browns, the political landscape in Cleveland changed. Mayor George Voinovich became Ohio’s governor and Mike White became mayor of Cleveland.

“The primary reason I was going bankrupt is because I had spent $80 million to repair Cleveland Stadium to prevent Cleveland from losing the Indians,� said Modell, who was asking for a refurbished Cleveland Stadium for the Browns. “I never would have left Cleveland if I had received parity with the Indians and Cavs.�

In Cleveland’s defense, Modell still had three years left on his lease when he accepted Baltimore’s offer. Fortunately for the city, the miscalculation by Modell’s closest confidants that the lease wasn’t binding is the only reason Cleveland got a new team.

The lease gave Cleveland leverage to sue Modell and strike a settlement in February of 1996, allowing Modell to move to Baltimore while leaving behind the Browns’ heritage for another team to be determined. Cleveland would have to build a new stadium.

“They didn’t have the money when I was there,� Modell said, “but they sure found that money when I left.�

On Sept. 8, 1998, about 11 months before they would have to play their first preseason game, the expansion Browns were awarded to Al Lerner, Modell’s former minority partner, and former 49ers executive Carmen Policy.

Ten years later, the Browns are still reeling from the rush to assemble a front office, coaching staff and roster of players. They are 34-72 since 1999 and are in Year 1 of their third regime and major rebuilding project in six years. They have one playoff game, a 36-33 loss at Pittsburgh in January 2003.

•••

Modell’s decision to move at the end of the 1995 season was leaked to a Baltimore TV station on Nov. 3.

The Browns, at 4-4, were preparing for a home game against the Houston Oilers two days later. Modell called a team meeting, knowing he would have to confirm those reports later that night to the Cleveland media.

“Art was very professional about it,� Stover said. “When he said, 'We’re moving to Baltimore,’ you could have heard a pin drop. My jaw dropped.�

Instantly, the Browns lost all sponsors. Fans remained supportive of the players, but were enraged by Modell as the home schedule played out in a tired old stadium in which every inch of advertising was blacked out. Modell did not attend games, fearing for his safety.

The Browns lost seven of their final eight. The only victory came against Cincinnati in the final game at old Cleveland Stadium. Bawling fans said goodbye to their team, not knowing if they would ever see another NFL game in Cleveland.

•••

Wilf admits his decision to announce he will never move or sell the team might be hurting his chances of getting a stadium.

“From a pure standpoint of strategy, it probably did hurt,� Wilf said. “But I’m not a politician. This is how I’ve always felt about it. ... It’s just not something that I would use as an arsenal. I just would hope that the state would see to it that they have a responsibility to the team and the community that I do.�

Wilf said if anyone is waiting for him to pay for the entire stadium project, “it won’t be happening. We have a partner that is willing to throw in $280 million, the county of Anoka.�

Former Vikings owner Red McCombs often used the threat of moving to Los Angeles, where the NFL is committed to returning one day. Once, when asked about his lease here, McCombs said, “See you in court.�

Wilf is not interested in Los Angeles, saying he is focused only on developing a partnership with the state of Minnesota.

“As much as people like to think that a team like the Vikings or a team like the Browns is a privately-held company and therefore not a responsibility of the community, it is a responsibility of the community,� Wilf said. “It’s a responsibility of the owner to respect that his obligation with the team is just not to make money, but to grow with the community. ... As much of a responsibility as I have in that role, it has to be shared with the government.�

Wilf said he worries that state politics will cause the Twins to move or be contracted and keep the Vikings in one of the NFL’s worst stadiums.

“Why has it become an issue of referendum or not?� Wilf said. “Why isn’t it an issue of making Minnesota proud of their respect for their teams?

“The market here is unbelievable. And yet we don’t even have a home. We have a home in the Metrodome, but to be quite honest with you, in terms of the age and the feeling of how football should be played, I’m not happy with it.�

The difference, however, between Wilf’s frustration and Modell’s desperation 10 years ago is as distinct as orange and purple.

The difference, Wilf said, is, “I’m not going anywhere.�

snowinapril
11-29-2005, 02:30 PM
“How can the governor, if he’s going to consider the Twins, not consider us?� Wilf said. “There’s no difference. We’re asking for them to endorse what the county [government] voted on. Our county voted on it two years ago. The Twins have only done this the last six months.

Just do it for darn sakes.


“I don’t want the Vikings to leave, but at the same time I want good school systems, good roads, safety, police and firemen,� Holch said. “We don’t have that right now. So why should we just give our money to a billionaire? Let’s all vote on it.�

People just don't see the long term financial benefit.

If we built a dome that is climate controlled, a Super Bowl would be in the mix within 5-8 years. This will generate a viking ship-boat load of money to the state and cities.

The KC community plans on spending 300 million to put a roof on and renovate the Arrowhead stadium, to generate 400 million for the community.

http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=2226254


The Chiefs, and other backers of stadium renovations, hope the prospect of landing an event with an estimated $400 million economic impact will provide enough reason to vote "yes" this time.

"The tremendous benefit to Kansas City, both in economic terms and prestige, are beyond calculation," Mayor Kay Barnes said in a written statement.

Owners Reason to have a team, this is why Zigy wants to win: Article from 2003, see how winning a SB helped the Bucs win financially.

Forbes calculations, the Bucs' value increased by 11%, to $671 million, last year. That's not quite the pop afforded to either the Detroit Red Wings hockey team (up 18%, to $266 million) or the Los Angeles Lakers basketball squad (up 28%, to $360 million) after their championships in 2002 and 1998, respectively. Still, for most owners, the bottom line on the Super Bowl is: Forget the bottom line. "If it's going to cost you a couple of million to win, who cares?" says Salvatore Galatioto, managing director of sports finance at Lehman Brothers. "You want to be in the Super Bowl."

Wiggles67
11-29-2005, 08:06 PM
as much as I love Minnesota and cant wait to move back there. I have to agree with Wilf on his fursturations dealing with all this. For years I have been banging my head agianst the wall everytime I hear talk about the new stadium. I have to agree if you look long term a stadium would be nothing but beneficial to everyone in the state! I wish the govt would stop opposing the whole new stadium deal so much

robertsmith
11-29-2005, 08:15 PM
we are in desperate need of a new stadium

but will this take away from social programs and needs in the area if this is approved?

mnjamie
11-29-2005, 08:24 PM
From my understanding it would take $115MM from the state gov't ... from what I can see, that is a drop in the bucket compared to the amount of revenue the stadium would bring in ... but, there I go again making sense.

Sounds like to me, it's just a big pissing war with the politicians trying to flex their muscle again ... so to this point, I'm over it. Either they can be proactive and get this thing going now or loose this team in 2011. Shoot, let them move down here to Orlando ... Then I could go to some home games and you guys/gals can stay at my place the night before the games when ya come down and you know you would..... :lol:

Wiggles67
11-29-2005, 08:50 PM
"robertsmith" wrote:

we are in desperate need of a new stadium

but will this take away from social programs and needs in the area if this is approved?
I'm not really familiar with this stuff but if I understand it right. This money would not be taken away from social programs and other needs of the community directly. As they decide how to divide the money up for the next year they just might have to redisturbute it a little better. But the majority of the money would be a sales tax that wasnt there before so that wouldnt be taking money away from anything it would just be extra revenue generated in the community

magicci
11-30-2005, 02:11 AM
this is lame. the govt is just being irational with this. they are not looking at the big picture just staring down the "right now". i though we had already gotten a deal before?

PurplePackerEater
11-30-2005, 02:37 AM
Good luck to Wilf, he's gonna need it.

I just had this same arguement with my grand parents on Thanksgiving. After I pointed out the "big picture" they seemed to agree that we need to help pay for a new stadium.

snowinapril
11-30-2005, 02:58 AM
"PurplePackerEater" wrote:

Good luck to Wilf, he's gonna need it.

I just had this same arguement with my grand parents on Thanksgiving. After I pointed out the "big picture" they seemed to agree that we need to help pay for a new stadium.

There has to be sales tax on tickets right??

If so, 64,000 x let's say average ticket of $60 = $3.8 million dollars x .04% = $153,600 in tax on one game x that by 8 games = $1,228,800 a year.

That doesn't look like much but then think of all the gear that is sold through out the year.

Then look at how much the average fan spends on gas, food, lodging and other game day necessities.

Plus 20 years from now everything will be inflated and this whole $200 million thing will look like a drop in the bucket.

Then think about if the Vikes aren't in MN. The loss of jobs, would equall the loss of state income tax. It isn't just the 100-200people that work at the stadium, it is the beer delivery guy, the companies that are contracted to clean the stadium, the companies that are contracted for security, and the vendors.

Then it is the players salaries that are taken away from the state. The team could spend up to $85 million each year in salary to players alone.

Anyone know the approximate state income tax on $85 million.

Bottom line, the Vikes are more important finacially to the community than the Twins. They are closer to getting the Twins deal done. Once that is done, they will be able to deal with the Vikes. THE POLITICIANS know we aren't going anywhere and they are just waiting it out as long as they can.

Plus there is the whole Dome Lease thing until 2011.

gregair13
11-30-2005, 03:01 AM
we need to get this dang stadium built. i dont want our team to move. lets hope ziggy can pull it off

singersp
11-30-2005, 03:17 AM
You pretty much said what I was going to say SIA.

Include into that mix the amount of tax dollars gained by outlet stores & sports shops selling Vikings gear & those jobs.

Ziggy also plans on building a sports complex around the new stadium, which would include shop, restaurants. They need to take into account the added revenue & jobs that will be available when that opens. They aren't getting that with the current dome.

The new stadium will have it's own parking, meaning more revenue pouring in. A lot of that money is now going to owners of private lots around the area.

A stadium cannot be built overnight so they cannot afford to wait until 2011 to make up their minds.

The longer they wait the more the stadium is going to cost due to inflation.

If they say yes this year, Ziggy's $280 Million kick in is going to have a bigger dent into the overall cost than it will 3-5 years from now.

The sooner it's built the sooner these new jobs & additional revenues will be available.

The state needs to wake up & smell the coffee.

I remember in 1993 when the state thought we could get by without a pro hockey team, so are North Stars moved to Dallas.

7 years later, after they realized they were wrong, we have a new hockey team & a new arena.

Can't these people learn from their own mistakes?

mnjamie
11-30-2005, 03:24 AM
"snowinapril" wrote:

"PurplePackerEater" wrote:

Good luck to Wilf, he's gonna need it.

I just had this same arguement with my grand parents on Thanksgiving. After I pointed out the "big picture" they seemed to agree that we need to help pay for a new stadium.

There has to be sales tax on tickets right??

If so, 64,000 x let's say average ticket of $60 = $3.8 million dollars x .04% = $153,600 in tax on one game x that by 8 games = $1,228,800 a year.

That doesn't look like much but then think of all the gear that is sold through out the year.

Then look at how much the average fan spends on gas, food, lodging and other game day necessities.

Plus 20 years from now everything will be inflated and this whole $200 million thing will look like a drop in the bucket.

Then think about if the Vikes aren't in MN. The loss of jobs, would equall the loss of state income tax. It isn't just the 100-200people that work at the stadium, it is the beer delivery guy, the companies that are contracted to clean the stadium, the companies that are contracted for security, and the vendors.

Then it is the players salaries that are taken away from the state. The team could spend up to $85 million each year in salary to players alone.

Anyone know the approximate state income tax on $85 million.

Bottom line, the Vikes are more important finacially to the community than the Twins. They are closer to getting the Twins deal done. Once that is done, they will be able to deal with the Vikes. THE POLITICIANS know we aren't going anywhere and they are just waiting it out as long as they can.

Plus there is the whole Dome Lease thing until 2011.


You know, the people of Indi believed the same thing ... Till they became the Ravens .... Wilf can say all he wants this team is going nowhere, but if he is shot down again and again on the stadium (which we all know he badly wants) I could easily see this team becoming the Orlando Seagulls really easy .... (their will be a team in LA already plus I would love to see them move down here closer to me in Tampa) ..... sorry, call me greedy ... lol

PurplePackerEater
11-30-2005, 03:36 AM
"mnjamie" wrote:

"snowinapril" wrote:

"PurplePackerEater" wrote:

Good luck to Wilf, he's gonna need it.

I just had this same arguement with my grand parents on Thanksgiving. After I pointed out the "big picture" they seemed to agree that we need to help pay for a new stadium.

There has to be sales tax on tickets right??

If so, 64,000 x let's say average ticket of $60 = $3.8 million dollars x .04% = $153,600 in tax on one game x that by 8 games = $1,228,800 a year.

That doesn't look like much but then think of all the gear that is sold through out the year.

Then look at how much the average fan spends on gas, food, lodging and other game day necessities.

Plus 20 years from now everything will be inflated and this whole $200 million thing will look like a drop in the bucket.

Then think about if the Vikes aren't in MN. The loss of jobs, would equall the loss of state income tax. It isn't just the 100-200people that work at the stadium, it is the beer delivery guy, the companies that are contracted to clean the stadium, the companies that are contracted for security, and the vendors.

Then it is the players salaries that are taken away from the state. The team could spend up to $85 million each year in salary to players alone.

Anyone know the approximate state income tax on $85 million.

Bottom line, the Vikes are more important finacially to the community than the Twins. They are closer to getting the Twins deal done. Once that is done, they will be able to deal with the Vikes. THE POLITICIANS know we aren't going anywhere and they are just waiting it out as long as they can.

Plus there is the whole Dome Lease thing until 2011.


You know, the people of Indi believed the same thing ... Till they became the Ravens .... Wilf can say all he wants this team is going nowhere, but if he is shot down again and again on the stadium (which we all know he badly wants) I could easily see this team becoming the Orlando Seagulls really easy .... (their will be a team in LA already plus I would love to see them move down here closer to me in Tampa) ..... sorry, call me greedy ... lol

Greedy!

:lol:

mnjamie
11-30-2005, 04:28 AM
"PurplePackerEater" wrote:

"mnjamie" wrote:

"snowinapril" wrote:

"PurplePackerEater" wrote:

Good luck to Wilf, he's gonna need it.

I just had this same arguement with my grand parents on Thanksgiving. After I pointed out the "big picture" they seemed to agree that we need to help pay for a new stadium.

There has to be sales tax on tickets right??

If so, 64,000 x let's say average ticket of $60 = $3.8 million dollars x .04% = $153,600 in tax on one game x that by 8 games = $1,228,800 a year.

That doesn't look like much but then think of all the gear that is sold through out the year.

Then look at how much the average fan spends on gas, food, lodging and other game day necessities.

Plus 20 years from now everything will be inflated and this whole $200 million thing will look like a drop in the bucket.

Then think about if the Vikes aren't in MN. The loss of jobs, would equall the loss of state income tax. It isn't just the 100-200people that work at the stadium, it is the beer delivery guy, the companies that are contracted to clean the stadium, the companies that are contracted for security, and the vendors.

Then it is the players salaries that are taken away from the state. The team could spend up to $85 million each year in salary to players alone.

Anyone know the approximate state income tax on $85 million.

Bottom line, the Vikes are more important finacially to the community than the Twins. They are closer to getting the Twins deal done. Once that is done, they will be able to deal with the Vikes. THE POLITICIANS know we aren't going anywhere and they are just waiting it out as long as they can.

Plus there is the whole Dome Lease thing until 2011.


You know, the people of Indi believed the same thing ... Till they became the Ravens .... Wilf can say all he wants this team is going nowhere, but if he is shot down again and again on the stadium (which we all know he badly wants) I could easily see this team becoming the Orlando Seagulls really easy .... (their will be a team in LA already plus I would love to see them move down here closer to me in Tampa) ..... sorry, call me greedy ... lol

Greedy!

:lol:


Hay, Hay, hay .... if it is for certain they are going to move, might as be down here where you have a place to crash w\ 57" TV, NFL Ticket and all the beer one could drink .... Right????? :lol:

midgensa
11-30-2005, 04:39 AM
Ziggy is gonna get it done at some point ... the Vikes will have a gorgeous new home by 2010 ... just a gut feeling.

SJHILL
11-30-2005, 06:24 AM
As long as they stay in the state of Minnesota, I don't care. Shit, I don't care if they're up in International Falls.

A new stadium(outdoors) would just rock.

singersp
11-30-2005, 02:12 PM
Vikings ponder whether to let go of roof idea

Kevin Seifert, Star Tribune
Last update: November 29, 2005 at 10:08 PM

As the expiration of their stadium agreement draws closer, the Vikings and representatives of Anoka County are discussing whether to drop their request for $115 million in state money by eliminating plans for a retractable roof.

While still in a conceptual phase, the change would bring the project to a political match with the Minnesota Twins' ballpark proposal. Like the Twins, the Vikings could begin construction upon approval from the Legislature to bypass a referendum for a new Anoka County sales tax.

Costs for the $560 million open-air stadium in Blaine would be split equally by the Vikings and the county. About $95 million of the Vikings' contribution would come from an NFL loan; Anoka County would generate its financing from a 0.75 percent county sales tax.

"It's a plausible scenario," said Lester Bagley, Vikings vice president of public affairs and stadium development. "If the bills come up next session, and the Twins want nothing but an endorsement and we want an endorsement plus state money for a roof, then our deal is harder to do. [Owner] Zygi Wilf has made clear his preference is to have an open-air stadium. The political situation might make that more conducive."

The Vikings' deal with Anoka County, announced Sept. 20 and geared toward a potential special session of the Legislature, will expire Dec. 31. It represented a compromise between Wilf's vision of an open-air stadium and Anoka County's hopes for a fixed roof that it believes would make the facility a year-round sports venue.

Steve Novak, the county's stadium project manager, said Tuesday local leaders still prefer a fixed roof but believe the state should shoulder the costs because it will benefit from the events a domed stadium would attract.

"We need some sort of state participation to pay for a roof," Novak said. "Right now we don't have that. If that were to continue, that will raise other issues down the road. We would deal with those then. Hopefully, the state will come to its senses and we won't have to worry about that."

A roof -- fixed or retractable -- has long been considered a way to enhance the value of a new NFL stadium. Wilf, however, believes an open-air stadium would draw the franchise closer to its historic roots and also provide a long-term competitive advantage.

Bagley said Wilf, after touring outdoor stadiums in Seattle, Green Bay and other NFL cities, is considering alternative ways to make the stadium a year-round destination -- including an atrium with restaurants and retail outlets, similar to Green Bay's Lambeau Field.

"We respect the agreement we have with Anoka County," Bagley said. "Zygi has a strong personal opinion on the roof, but he also knows he has a partner that wants to put real money into the project. But with the agreement expiring at the end of the year, there may be room to explore other options."

Etc.

• Cornerback Fred Smoot will sit out Sunday's game at Detroit, coach Mike Tice said Tuesday after reviewing the results of a CT scan performed Monday on Smoot's fractured right collarbone. Smoot, who returned to practice last week, is at least another week away from playing.

• Hall of Fame defensive lineman Carl Eller and former running back Chuck Foreman will accompany the Vikings to Detroit this weekend as part of Wilf's new alumni program.

singersp
11-30-2005, 02:18 PM
I think a retractable is still the way to go.

The extra money up front will get a quicker payback with revenue gained from being able to use the stadium year around for other events.

You just can't predict rain that far in advance to be able to schedule events that would have to be canceled due to inclimate weather.

jimmymac
11-30-2005, 10:10 PM
In today's Star Trib there's an article about a future Vikings stadium and the decision to have a retractable roof or no roof.

http://www.startribune.com/stories/510/5754022.html

The article quotes that "Zygi Wilf has made clear his preference is to have an open-air stadium." I have to agree...

I think that having an open air stadium helps a team in the long run. The Viking's 4 trips to the Super Bowl were all as an open stadium team. Much has been made of the Patriots home field advantage, especially late in the season.

Having a retractable roof is no different that a permanent roof because it will be closed during bad weather, so what's the point?

On the other hand, fans may not be as willing to show up to the game during bad weather. Is that the case?

Since I don't live in Minn. and can't attend games I don't know what the local fan thinks about this. So, what do you guys think?

Thanks in advance. :grin:

JDogg926
11-30-2005, 10:20 PM
Retractable would be sweet, but then again, I don't live there.

StillPurple
11-30-2005, 10:23 PM
I think many teams play in cold weather (Buffalo, Cleveland, Chicago, Green Bay, etc.). Why not us ? I remember in the 1970s, in the playoffs, we would play Dallas or the Rams, and they just didn't want to play in such cold weather. It was a great home field advantage.

... on the other hand, it is a bit tough on the fans...

cajunvike
11-30-2005, 10:26 PM
Wilf REALLY wants no roof, retractable or otherwise...and he may get his wish if it comes down to money. Anoka County is the partner in this venture that is pushing for the roof, because they want to use it year-round for multiple events besides football. It is a slippery slope...more use but more expensive, less use but less expensive...you get what you pay for, I guess!

I would like to see the retractable roof, but that is just my practical nature coming through. I would be cool with an open-air stadium if that is what it would take to resolve the stadium issue, though. It's not like I will be going their for the vast majority of the games anyway, seeing as I live far outside the state.

Mr. Purple
11-30-2005, 10:27 PM
I would love to have a retractable, but if it comes down to it, I'd like no roof...somethin bout playing out doors I just love.

mnjamie
11-30-2005, 10:28 PM
"WilliamsonOfTroy" wrote:

I would love to have a retractable, but if it comes down to it, I'd like no roof...somethin bout playing out doors I just love.


When's the last time your a$$ has been out of FL and in MN in late Dec.??? lol

It has to be retactable or dont even build the damn thing.

snowinapril
11-30-2005, 10:36 PM
Build it and they will come!

with or without the roof

snowinapril
11-30-2005, 10:42 PM
The important thing is to set parameters for opening and closing the roof.

When it is X degrees or raining close it. Or when the wind chill gets below zero. I don't care what the variable are, but make them and stick to it.

It will be open unless X happens.

In Houston, it is left to a whim. Even as a person attending the game, I have been disappointed about it being closed on nice days, too hot supposedly. I wonder if the players attitudes are affected by the roof being open or closed.

Oh well!

VikingFanEric
11-30-2005, 11:15 PM
Although I don't live in Minnesota, I am all for the open air stadium. I love seeing the old clips on nfl films of the Vikings playing in the mud and snow. The clips of the Rams freezing their arses off while the Vikes players dont even have long sleeves on. Its an intimidation factor and allows for the weather elements to come into play. I love watching games in the snow. Its unfortunate for the fans who freeze thier arses off, but the real fans would still go whether its cold or not. Football is supposed to be played outdoors. I'm really loving Wilf, he's a great owner. What a change from Red.

Also, you gotta love how Wilf "believes an open-air stadium would draw the franchise closer to its historic roots and also provide a long-term competitive advantage." And Wilf's alumni program is awesome.

GO WILF, GO VIKES...SKOL!!

tosstomoss
11-30-2005, 11:16 PM
closed, thats the way of the old days.It can help us in the long run.

Ltrey33
11-30-2005, 11:22 PM
"mnjamie" wrote:

"WilliamsonOfTroy" wrote:

I would love to have a retractable, but if it comes down to it, I'd like no roof...somethin bout playing out doors I just love.


When's the last time your a$$ has been out of FL and in MN in late Dec.??? lol

It has to be retactable or dont even build the gol 'darnit thing.

Exactly. I really don't thnk fans would be as apt to go see a game in -20 degree weather as they would to see a game in a nice 72 degree dome. It's all about generating revenue, and making a coldass stadium is not a way to generate revenue.

COJOMAY
11-30-2005, 11:22 PM
The roof issue does not concern Zygi and the Vikes one way or another. It was the Anoka County Commissioners that wanted the roof because they wanted the stadium to be more multi-facated. They wanted to use it for concerts and bring other big name entertainment events in during the winter months.

Del Rio
12-01-2005, 12:14 AM
Here's your post COJO.

All my posts are on the other one.

ultravikingfan
12-01-2005, 12:17 AM
"Del Rio" wrote:

Here's your post COJO.

All my posts are on the other one.

Do you understand what I meant now about posting in a moved post?

bleedpurple27
12-01-2005, 01:40 AM
Roof...no roof......who cares.....just get er dunn!

I live in Wisconsin...(but grew up in Minnesota) and I see the state of Wisconsin has a Optionial lic. plate that is a " packer Plate"..It has the big G on it and everything....I have to think that the team gets SOME of the money for that right?? ALthough I'm not sure about that...but why not create a Vikings plate and put the money towards the stadium...just a thought...maybe a dumb one...but hey why not? I know the family I have left in Minnesota would buy them...hey that's 10-11 plates right there...at 70 bucks a crack. It's not going to slove the problem...Oh heck...alright I'm just jealous that the Packers have one and Minnesota doesn't..I'd think about moving back to the land of 10,000 lakes justo get one...right after I talk the Wife into it...heck we're only 10 miles from the border as it is....
Like any of you care about this...sorry I was thinking outloud while I was typing...not a good thing for me to do!!

singersp
12-01-2005, 02:07 AM
"VikingFanEric" wrote:

Although I don't live in Minnesota, I am all for the open air stadium. I love seeing the old clips on nfl films of the Vikings playing in the mud and snow. The clips of the Rams freezing their arses off while the Vikes players dont even have long sleeves on. Its an intimidation factor and allows for the weather elements to come into play. I love watching games in the snow. Its unfortunate for the fans who freeze thier arses off, but the real fans would still go whether its cold or not. Football is supposed to be played outdoors. I'm really loving Wilf, he's a great owner. What a change from Red.

Also, you gotta love how Wilf "believes an open-air stadium would draw the franchise closer to its historic roots and also provide a long-term competitive advantage." And Wilf's alumni program is awesome.

GO WILF, GO VIKES...SKOL!!

I have to disagree with you on that statement. I see a lot of elderly & disabled fans at the games whom I'm sure are die-hard Vikings fans.

Unfortunately for some of them, they cannot take the cold like they once used too & I for one don't think they're lesser fans for it.

A person has to think about all the fans that will be visiting the stadium & not think of just themselves.

aceclown
12-01-2005, 02:30 AM
"singersp" wrote:

"VikingFanEric" wrote:

Although I don't live in Minnesota, I am all for the open air stadium. I love seeing the old clips on nfl films of the Vikings playing in the mud and snow. The clips of the Rams freezing their arses off while the Vikes players dont even have long sleeves on. Its an intimidation factor and allows for the weather elements to come into play. I love watching games in the snow. Its unfortunate for the fans who freeze thier arses off, but the real fans would still go whether its cold or not. Football is supposed to be played outdoors. I'm really loving Wilf, he's a great owner. What a change from Red.

Also, you gotta love how Wilf "believes an open-air stadium would draw the franchise closer to its historic roots and also provide a long-term competitive advantage." And Wilf's alumni program is awesome.

GO WILF, GO VIKES...SKOL!!

I have to disagree with you on that statement. I see a lot of elderly & disabled fans at the games whom I'm sure are die-hard Vikings fans.

Unfortunately for some of them, they cannot take the cold like they once used too & I for one don't think they're lesser fans for it.

A person has to think about all the fans that will be visiting the stadium & not think of just themselves.

Could not have said it better myself

DPep11
12-01-2005, 02:34 AM
I hate to sound like a prick, but I doubt many people are taking into account elderly or disabled fans when it comes to building a new stadium. It would be beneficial for the franchise to have an outdoor stadium for homefield advantages.

A retractable roof would be nice, but I dont know if I'm too opposed on just having an open roof stadium

SWAYZE74
12-01-2005, 02:36 AM
no roof...no roof...no roof...football is much more real when it is in the outdoors...think of all those classic nfl film shows where the field is all muddy/snowy/totally soaked/foggy/windy/etc...i cant think of any games where i was like, wow...its 75 degrees in a controlled climate...how will the teams deal with those conditions...

peace...

bleedpurple27
12-01-2005, 02:48 AM
I think if we built a stadium without a roof it would put a whole new face on our "home field" advantage...for the better....I can't tell you how many times I've been told by a Viking fan sitting behind me to "please sit down I can't see the game"....or the people who think the Dome is too loud and that the people running the sound systym should keep it down.....I think that alot of these fans that just go to the game because it's somthing to do on a Sunday, wouldn't go if they had to sit there in - 5 below zero.....I say keep the roof off the sucka....

Build and they will come...

singersp
12-01-2005, 03:01 AM
"DPep11" wrote:

I hate to sound like a prick, but I doubt many people are taking into account elderly or disabled fans when it comes to building a new stadium. It would be beneficial for the franchise to have an outdoor stadium for homefield advantages.

A retractable roof would be nice, but I dont know if I'm too opposed on just having an open roof stadium

No, you're not a poke. Read my post 2 up from yours that mentions that exact same thing.

singersp
12-21-2005, 02:53 PM
Vikings to extend pact with Anoka County

As Dec. 31 expiration looms for their stadium deal, the Vikings and Anoka County agree to an extension of several months.

Kevin Seifert, Anthony Lonetree and Mike Kaszuba, Star Tribune
Last update: December 20, 2005 at 11:29 PM

Vikings owner Zygi Wilf has agreed to extend his stadium deal with Anoka County through at least next summer, a team official said Tuesday, and the parties largely will keep intact a proposal that calls for a $675 million retractable-roof stadium.

The original agreement was set to expire Dec. 31, and the Vikings had been discussing an extension that would have eliminated the roof to feature a $560 million open-air stadium in Blaine. But Anoka County officials prefer a roof in order to create a year-round venue, and Wilf agreed to continue along that path.

"We have agreed verbally to proceed and continue advocating for a retractable-roof stadium," said Lester Bagley, the Vikings' vice president of public affairs and stadium development.

Bagley said that attorneys are working on the final details of the extension, but that it will last at least six months in order to carry the proposal through the 2006 session of the Legislature.

Anoka County Commissioners Margaret Langfeld and Dan Erhart said Tuesday that they anticipate no difficulties in negotiating the extension.

"Both sides, I think, are happy with the agreement and intend to renew it much the same," said Langfeld, the County Board chairwoman.

The current proposal calls for the state to pay for the stadium's roof, estimated at $115 million. An open-air stadium could be financed equally by the Vikings ($280 million) and Anoka County ($280 million through a 0.75 percent sales tax).

Extension for other stadiums?

The Vikings' is one of three stadium proposals to hit critical mass this year. The other two are a $248 million outdoor University of Minnesota football stadium on campus and a $478 million outdoor baseball stadium in downtown Minneapolis for the Minnesota Twins.

All require considerable taxpayer financing. Like the Vikings' proposed stadium, Dec. 31 also looms large for the Gopher and Twins stadium proposals.

In April, the university Board of Regents unanimously approved a 25-year, $35 million deal with TCF Bank for naming rights to the new football stadium. That deal is set to expire Dec. 31.

Gophers Athletic Director Joel Maturi said negotiations are taking place to extend that deadline and said he was hopeful of legislative approval of additional stadium financing.

"I think quite honestly, if we have it done early in the session, we can easily ensure [the stadium] will be ready by 2009," Maturi said.

There were no indications Tuesday that a deadline extension would be coming for a $478 million stadium for the Twins.

Both the Twins and Hennepin County, which would use a countywide sales tax to help finance the project, have said the terms of the much-debated stadium deal would essentially expire on Dec. 31.

Since shortly after it was announced last April, the project has been in limbo because supporters have been unable to get approval from the Legislature.

Under the deal's terms, the Legislature needs to give Hennepin County an exemption from a state law that requires a citizen referendum to approve the project.

On Monday, Twins spokesman Jerry Bell reiterated that the agreement ends at the end of the year.

Mike Opat, the Hennepin County commissioner who is the deal's chief proponent for the county, agreed. "Maybe we work together again in the future, maybe we don't," he said, adding, "don't read too much into" that statement.

The Vikings stadium has generally been considered to have the least amount of legislative support of the three. There's general acknowledgement that allegations of lewd behavior by Viking players on a boating trip earlier this year may hinder support for the Blaine stadium.

While the relationship between the team and county is strong, said Anoka County's Erhart, it's the question of whether a deal can be reached with state leaders on the sales tax issue, as well as state funding for the project, that is most important.

Neither House Speaker Steve Sviggum nor Senate Majority Leader Dean Johnson could be reached for comment.

Bagley of the Vikings did not rule out the possibility that the no-roof stadium proposal debate could surface again if the state refuses to contribute to the project.

In that scenario, the state's only involvement would be approving Anoka County's request to levy the sales tax without a referendum.

kseifert@startribune.com alonetree@startribune.com • 612-673-4455 mkaszuba@startribune.com • 612-673-4388

Staff writer Chip Scoggins contributed to this report

DaScRuM
12-21-2005, 03:54 PM
I would prefer open air, but, would accept a retractable roof.

I believe the last event I attended in the Metro"dump" was back in '89. I made a committment never to go back----even though I am and have been a big Twins and Vikings fan.

It (the Metro"dump" stole any atmosphere away from the game of baseball, as far as I am concerned). C'mon, worried about losing the ball "in the roof"?----or worried about a ball hitting the speakers and wondering if it is a live ball or dead? Ba humbug!

It was just an "ok" place for football. Very sterile. To me, it just never felt like a place the Vikings should call "home".

This from a guy who attended many a game at the old Met. Baseball and football----including those cold, wintry playoff games.

Never liked the dome, never will.

singersp
01-25-2006, 01:48 PM
Posted on Wed, Jan. 25, 2006

Wilf's new stadium drive faces rocky road

Stiff opposition awaits Vikings boss' latest PR push

BY ARON KAHN
Pioneer Press

He's about to launch a media campaign to pull even in the stadium race, but Minnesota Vikings owner Zygi Wilf's stadium drive will be an uphill tramp in the face of vast opposition.

If nothing else, the come-from-behind dash will make one thing clear: Wilf is fightingmuch harder, and more personally, than predecessor Red McCombs ever contemplated.

By any measure, the University of Minnesota and the Minnesota Twins are running first and second in the stadium marathon, with the Vikings a distant third. The governor says so. The Legislature says so.

What's more, several Anoka County city councils have passed resolutions asking that voters, not the Legislature, decide whether a countywide sales tax should be approved to help pay for a stadium.

"The need to hire an outside firm indicates they realize they're in trouble,' said Ron Hoch, Lino Lakes, a leader of Taxpayers Against an Anoka County Vikings Stadium, referring to the team's new PR campaign. "… The question is, does money trump democracy?'

All that won't keep Wilf from the door.

An enormously successful developer who bought the Vikings last spring, Wilf is zealously trying to change political minds. He bristles at the assertion that the Legislature, which begins its 2006 session March 1, should approve one or perhaps two stadiums, if stadiums are approved at all.

"That it's too great a weight to do it for all three is a lot of baloney," Wilf recently told an annual meeting of general contractors.

He's been making similar statements at other business gatherings lately. The upcoming public relations campaign, perhaps costing $1 million or more, will add more spin power.

But if PR campaigns could easily work magic in Minnesota, the nation's epicenter of resistance to publicly subsidized stadiums, the Twins would be playing in a new stadium by now.

The baseball team has spent more than $15 million since the late 1990s trying to change the public's mind, team president Dave St. Peter said. That money went to multiple public relations, advertising and lobbying firms. Yet the ballpark remains on an architect's easel.

"We are many, many yards away from a score,' Carleton College political science professor Steven Schier said, referring to the Vikings' stadium drive.

"It's a small part of a long-term investment that's going to have to involve many more millions than just this one to have success, because they're going to have to produce a sea change in public opinion,' he said.

Fed by the public's hunger for a once-a-week game, the Vikings are hugely popular in Minnesota. Their games are sold out; television revenues are sky high; gambling and fantasy football stir fan attention; and sponsors race to sign up. But the Vikings run third in the stadium race for four basic reasons, stadium politicos agree:

• Their home in the Metrodome is viewed as an acceptable place to play football.

• Their Metrodome use agreement doesn't expire until the end of the 2011 season.

• The team has underperformed on the field.

• The team's players have gotten into considerable trouble off the field.
"The Vikings are less sympathetic than the other two,' said David Carter, a Redondo Beach, Calif., consultant and director of the University of Southern California's Sports Business Institute.

But the public relations firm hired by Wilf — Winner & Mandabach, of Santa Monica, Calif. — says it has changed minds before. Having managed and consulted on more than 140 issue campaigns, the firm claims a win record of 90 percent, including a victory in an unusual, three-way gambling-casino ballot issue in Arizona in 2002.

Now Winner & Mandabach will try to win the Vikings a stadium in Blaine. The campaign is expected to begin in February, leading to the start of the legislative session. But it will have to be designed carefully, sports business consultants say, or it could backfire.

"A well-thought-out, honest, legitimate campaign could affect public opinion in a positive way,' said Dean Bonham, former president of the Denver Nuggets basketball team and now head of the Bonham Group, a national sports-business consultancy in Denver.

"But there is a huge pitfall. If a PR campaign is done in a way that the perception from the public is that the new owner is spending millions of dollars trying to feed them a line, then the money spent could have the opposite effect,' he said.

Carter agreed. Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt stumbled with a campaign aimed at making fans comfortable with cutting player payroll, firing respected front-office personnel and aggressively renovating Dodger Stadium, Carter pointed out.

"McCourt wasn't seeking public money, but he was seeking public acclaim and a revival of the Dodger franchise,' Carter said. "But it felt like a political campaign …. Virtually at every turn, he engendered distrust and disdain because it did not appear that he could appreciate the Dodgers' role in the community.'

Picking the right firm for the Minnesota job is key, said Bonham, who said he believes the Vikings will win a stadium agreement before 2011. The Vikings say the agreement is needed now, because the stadium would not open until three or four years after bill passage.

Wilf told the contractors that an additional $1 billion in private investment would finance a shopping and entertainment complex at the stadium, "creating thousands upon thousands of permanent jobs.'

He said new stadiums for the Vikings, Twins and University of Minnesota football team are "a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity which unfortunately is being politicized."

Lester Bagley, Wilf's stadium point man, was grittier in an interview, questioning whether Gov. Tim Pawlenty is truly interested in a stadium solution, as the governor contends he is.

"I'm skeptical that the governor is serious about it …. The governor has got to lead. The governor has to go in there and knock heads," Bagley said.

But Schier of Carleton College said the Vikings need more than head-butting.

"They need on-field and off-field performances,' he said. "Why all of a sudden do they qualify the same as the U and the Twins? You got to show evidence. You can't just say we're all in this together.'

Aron Kahn can be reached at 651-228-5569 or akahn@pioneerpress.com.

http://www.twincities.com/mld/twincities/news/local/13702906.htm

singersp
01-25-2006, 01:56 PM
The Minnesota legislature needs to remove their headgear;

http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b21/singersp82759/blinders.jpg

NordicNed
01-25-2006, 02:52 PM
"singersp" wrote:

The Minnesota legislature needs to remove their headgear;

http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b21/singersp82759/blinders.jpg

I think it's more like, get their heads out of their asses..... :wink:

Prophet
01-25-2006, 03:38 PM
"VikingNed" wrote:

"singersp" wrote:

The Minnesota legislature needs to remove their headgear;

http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b21/singersp82759/blinders.jpg

I think it's more like, get their heads out of their asses..... :wink:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v153/doubleohfive/head_up_ass.jpg

COJOMAY
01-25-2006, 04:50 PM
...if stadium isn't built?????

Today there was another massive article on why the Vikings will not get a new stadium built. Frankly, I don't like the looks of this. If they don't start in a couple of years they move. The end of this article says that the Vikings have to start winning like the U of M and the Twins in order to get a new stadium. Ahhhh, pardon me, since when are either of them world beaters?

Wilf's new stadium drive faces rocky road
Stiff opposition awaits Vikings boss' latest PR push
BY ARON KAHN
Pioneer Press

He's about to launch a media campaign to pull even in the stadium race, but Minnesota Vikings owner Zygi Wilf's stadium drive will be an uphill tramp in the face of vast opposition.

If nothing else, the come-from-behind dash will make one thing clear: Wilf is fightingmuch harder, and more personally, than predecessor Red McCombs ever contemplated.

By any measure, the University of Minnesota and the Minnesota Twins are running first and second in the stadium marathon, with the Vikings a distant third. The governor says so. The Legislature says so.

What's more, several Anoka County city councils have passed resolutions asking that voters, not the Legislature, decide whether a countywide sales tax should be approved to help pay for a stadium.

"The need to hire an outside firm indicates they realize they're in trouble,' said Ron Hoch, Lino Lakes, a leader of Taxpayers Against an Anoka County Vikings Stadium, referring to the team's new PR campaign. "… The question is, does money trump democracy?'

All that won't keep Wilf from the door.

An enormously successful developer who bought the Vikings last spring, Wilf is zealously trying to change political minds. He bristles at the assertion that the Legislature, which begins its 2006 session March 1, should approve one or perhaps two stadiums, if stadiums are approved at all.

"That it's too great a weight to do it for all three is a lot of baloney," Wilf recently told an annual meeting of general contractors.

He's been making similar statements at other business gatherings lately. The upcoming public relations campaign, perhaps costing $1 million or more, will add more spin power.

But if PR campaigns could easily work magic in Minnesota, the nation's epicenter of resistance to publicly subsidized stadiums, the Twins would be playing in a new stadium by now.

The baseball team has spent more than $15 million since the late 1990s trying to change the public's mind, team president Dave St. Peter said. That money went to multiple public relations, advertising and lobbying firms. Yet the ballpark remains on an architect's easel.

"We are many, many yards away from a score,' Carleton College political science professor Steven Schier said, referring to the Vikings' stadium drive.

"It's a small part of a long-term investment that's going to have to involve many more millions than just this one to have success, because they're going to have to produce a sea change in public opinion,' he said.

Fed by the public's hunger for a once-a-week game, the Vikings are hugely popular in Minnesota. Their games are sold out; television revenues are sky high; gambling and fantasy football stir fan attention; and sponsors race to sign up. But the Vikings run third in the stadium race for four basic reasons, stadium politicos agree:

• Their home in the Metrodome is viewed as an acceptable place to play football.

• Their Metrodome use agreement doesn't expire until the end of the 2011 season.

• The team has underperformed on the field.

• The team's players have gotten into considerable trouble off the field.

"The Vikings are less sympathetic than the other two,' said David Carter, a Redondo Beach, Calif., consultant and director of the University of Southern California's Sports Business Institute.

But the public relations firm hired by Wilf — Winner & Mandabach, of Santa Monica, Calif. — says it has changed minds before. Having managed and consulted on more than 140 issue campaigns, the firm claims a win record of 90 percent, including a victory in an unusual, three-way gambling-casino ballot issue in Arizona in 2002.

Now Winner & Mandabach will try to win the Vikings a stadium in Blaine. The campaign is expected to begin in February, leading to the start of the legislative session. But it will have to be designed carefully, sports business consultants say, or it could backfire.

"A well-thought-out, honest, legitimate campaign could affect public opinion in a positive way,' said Dean Bonham, former president of the Denver Nuggets basketball team and now head of the Bonham Group, a national sports-business consultancy in Denver.

"But there is a huge pitfall. If a PR campaign is done in a way that the perception from the public is that the new owner is spending millions of dollars trying to feed them a line, then the money spent could have the opposite effect,' he said.

Carter agreed. Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt stumbled with a campaign aimed at making fans comfortable with cutting player payroll, firing respected front-office personnel and aggressively renovating Dodger Stadium, Carter pointed out.

"McCourt wasn't seeking public money, but he was seeking public acclaim and a revival of the Dodger franchise,' Carter said. "But it felt like a political campaign …. Virtually at every turn, he engendered distrust and disdain because it did not appear that he could appreciate the Dodgers' role in the community.'

Picking the right firm for the Minnesota job is key, said Bonham, who said he believes the Vikings will win a stadium agreement before 2011. The Vikings say the agreement is needed now, because the stadium would not open until three or four years after bill passage.

Wilf told the contractors that an additional $1 billion in private investment would finance a shopping and entertainment complex at the stadium, "creating thousands upon thousands of permanent jobs.'

He said new stadiums for the Vikings, Twins and University of Minnesota football team are "a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity which unfortunately is being politicized."

Lester Bagley, Wilf's stadium point man, was grittier in an interview, questioning whether Gov. Tim Pawlenty is truly interested in a stadium solution, as the governor contends he is.

"I'm skeptical that the governor is serious about it …. The governor has got to lead. The governor has to go in there and knock heads," Bagley said.

But Schier of Carleton College said the Vikings need more than head-butting.

"They need on-field and off-field performances,' he said. "Why all of a sudden do they qualify the same as the U and the Twins? You got to show evidence. You can't just say we're all in this together.'

cajunvike
01-25-2006, 04:55 PM
NOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

ChezPizmo
01-25-2006, 04:55 PM
If they took the Vikes out of Minnesota, that would be beyond tragic.
People there love their football so much that they would be crazy to decide to move the franchise. I heard this talk on PTI about a month ago. I just can't see the Vikes out of Minny...
I don't want to either.

Prophet
01-25-2006, 04:58 PM
Wilf wants the Vikings to win, not because he is a Vikings fan. He wants them to win so he can get a new stadium and make more money from his investment.

Personally, I don't care what his motivations are. We want the Vikings to win and Zygi wants the Vikings to win. Zygi has shown that he is willing to do his best to make them a winning team.

A stadium deal will be made eventually. I cannot imagine the Vikings moving or the people from Minnesota letting them move.

6-KINGS
01-25-2006, 05:07 PM
The Benbrook Vikings are back on!!!!

I better get the grass mowed by the dam.

bfld
01-25-2006, 05:19 PM
Don't panic. Figure how many years prior to 2012 season are needed to build it. That's when an agreement will be reached. Not before.

whackthepack
01-25-2006, 05:44 PM
Even if they need 3 years to build a stadium and don't get approval until 2009 to build one, the Vikes still wouldn't move. We have at least 5 years of Viking football in Minnesota, let's not panic yet! And we have 3 years until I say we are screwed, a lot can happen in 3 years!

simonsparre
01-25-2006, 06:18 PM
We are the Vikings! Vikings is from the cold north, and it isn't cold in LA!!!!!!!!

VikesfaninWis
01-25-2006, 06:25 PM
They won't leave, the people of Minnesota will speak up if that ever becomes a issue. Besides, if they did leave I would still support the team no matter where they end up, or what their name is. I am a fan till the end..

Vikes
01-25-2006, 06:43 PM
That would suck. Minnesota would basically need to fly from the coast to play divison-rivals! The Vikings are not moving. If they did move to LA I would be there every weekend.

RK.
01-25-2006, 07:41 PM
What I don't understand is this BS "if they were winning it would be different." That has nothing to do with it. Football stadiums are economic investments that make money for the local economy and the state. The Vikings have a fan base that doesn't falter if they are losing. You fans in MN better step up and smack your politicians around and get them on board or the Vikes will have no choice but to leave.

I live near Sacramento CA and we have been looking to get an NFL team here some day as well. I would love for the Vikes to move here. Then we could have the Kings and the Vikings and they both have purple as their color. In fact sometimes when wearing my vikings T-shirt people think its a Kings shirt. hmmmmmm I think this is a good idea maybe I should write to Wilf. :razz:

singersp
01-25-2006, 08:11 PM
That story (once again :grin: ) was posted by me earlier in an already existing thread! :wink:

http://purplepride.org/index.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&p=303026#303026

singersp
01-25-2006, 08:13 PM
:laughing3:

Good find Prophet!

purplegang
01-25-2006, 08:15 PM
Hey i live in a little hick town in ny state, here we built a little baseball stadium what they did is raise the taxes for the first year to build the stadium, after it was built the town recieved a percentage of the stadium proceeds from the games , then they offset the taxes they levied by this money, this way the tax payers get what they want that is no more taxes, the stadium got built, and the local economy got beter from having the stadium there, I will tell you this if you lose the vikes there good bye minnapolis , So you people better step up and vote the people out of office that cant get the job done

SamDawg84
01-25-2006, 08:36 PM
built the vikes a new staduim, get rid of the twins lol

PurpleRide
01-25-2006, 08:55 PM
People in MN have become so retarted when talking about the stadiums its not even funny anymore. Like I have said many of times, the local schools will not close, roads will not fall apart(worse than they are). Our homeless will still be homless regaurdless if a stadium is passed or not. We as tax payers have built many great buildings in this state I will never walk into. Do I bitch and complain? No. Why? I think progress is good for a state, community, etc. Progress does take money, and if it is a large project that the state will greatly benifit from, the state and local gov't should have to put money into the deal. If people really do feel the state should not do anything to help the situation, we as season ticket holders should be exempt from paying taxes on gas, liquor, and any other thing that gets taxed on game day. Its only fair since the state has no gain on building stadiums. Zigy should not be taxed on the property he ownes, the materials needed to build the stadium, the workers building, the vikings players and all other employees of the MN Vikings should not be taxed on their income because these stadiums show no benifit to the state. Mn is real close to becoming a displaced southern state, real f*ck'n close

whackthepack
01-25-2006, 09:17 PM
"RK." wrote:

What I don't understand is this BS "if they were winning it would be different." That has nothing to do with it. Football stadiums are economic investments that make money for the local economy and the state. The Vikings have a fan base that doesn't falter if they are losing. You fans in MN better step up and smack your politicians around and get them on board or the Vikes will have no choice but to leave.

I live near Sacramento CA and we have been looking to get an NFL team here some day as well. I would love for the Vikes to move here. Then we could have the Kings and the Vikings and they both have purple as their color. In fact sometimes when wearing my vikings T-shirt people think its a Kings shirt. hmmmmmm I think this is a good idea maybe I should write to Wilf. :razz:


Screw that RK! The Vikings belong in Minnesota, hence the name the Minnesota Vikings!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

PurpleRide
01-25-2006, 09:21 PM
Screw that RK! The Vikings belong in Minnesota, hence the name the Minnesota Vikings!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



Do something about it then.

bfld
01-25-2006, 10:01 PM
PurpleRide,

Since Del Rio has not yet jumped in, I'll say it: "Fair's got nothin to do with it." You'll get your stadium; EVENTUALLY. Wait in line with the others wanting to feed at the public trough.

whackthepack
01-25-2006, 10:13 PM
"PurpleRide" wrote:

Screw that RK! The Vikings belong in Minnesota, hence the name the Minnesota Vikings!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



Do something about it then.


I have been, have you been contacting your representatives?

PurpleRide
01-25-2006, 10:21 PM
I have been contating my state reps for the last 2 years, I will continue to do so. And the wait in line B.S. The Vikings are the most popular team in this state, the state has the most to loose by kicking them to the curb...Remeber the North Stars...They won a championship after we gave them the boot, the ravens won after cleveland tried to play hardball. Keep beliving it will just happen

finnishvikingsfan
01-25-2006, 10:27 PM
Send the vikings to the Iron Range I am sure people there would accept a little tax. They would stay in Minnesota and be somewhere where the fans want them.

whackthepack
01-25-2006, 10:34 PM
"PurpleRide" wrote:

I have been contating my state reps for the last 2 years, I will continue to do so. And the wait in line B.S. The Vikings are the most popular team in this state, the state has the most to loose by kicking them to the curb...Remeber the North Stars...They won a championship after we gave them the boot, the ravens won after cleveland tried to play hardball. Keep beliving it will just happen


2 things

Norm Green moved the team because of the sexual harassment suit, the Northstars were one of the few teams that were doing well in the NHL.

The ravens were moved without permission from the NFL, and the owner moved them in the middle of the friggin night. He had a deal set up with Baltimore already, and was never really trying to get a stadium in Cleveland, the city had made concessions and was seriously trying to get something worked out and he moved them because he got a huge payday from it.

vikesoto
01-25-2006, 10:38 PM
Vikings in Sacramento ?? Never !!! All those cowbells going for the Vikes is , well, nasty!! I will say that the fans there are a little off, they still flaunt their 2002 NBA Pacific Division Championship to Laker fans , but they forget that L.A. was the NBA Champions that year!!!! Point being, not very smart fans, sorry, the Vikes NEED to stay in MINNESOTA !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

PurpleRide
01-25-2006, 10:49 PM
Norm did not move the team because of a possible sexual harassment suit, dont read the gossip pages and believe everything. The state refused to help him with basic renovations to the met, that is a fact!
The cleveland situation is the same as here in MN. They tried to play hardball with model and lost badly. Both here and in cleveland lost future championship teams for bad expansion teams, the browns and wild are bad teams. The wild had one good year the rest have been terrible. Both cities/states payed well over 3 times the amount in state money to get new teams than if they would have not played retard ball and kept the teams they had before. It will happen again, and again we will try to place blame on a person who makes more money than us and not on ourselves. Get the facts straight. Read up on something before you try to say what is fact or fiction.

RK.
01-26-2006, 12:12 AM
"vikesoto" wrote:

Vikings in Sacramento ?? Never !!! All those cowbells going for the Vikes is , well, nasty!! I will say that the fans there are a little off, they still flaunt their 2002 NBA Pacific Division Championship to Laker fans , but they forget that L.A. was the NBA Champions that year!!!! Point being, not very smart fans, sorry, the Vikes NEED to stay in MINNESOTA !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Hey Kings fans are some of the best in the country. :smile: I would prefer we stay in MN but I was just saying if they have to move I hope it is close to me. :razz:

ultravikingfan
01-26-2006, 12:16 AM
The thing wrong with Cojo's title of his thread is nothing is said about the team moving; why even put that in the title?

DEVIKINGFAN!
01-26-2006, 12:40 AM
"Prophet" wrote:

Wilf wants the Vikings to win, not because he is a Vikings fan. He wants them to win so he can get a new stadium and make more money from his investment.

Personally, I don't care what his motivations are. We want the Vikings to win and Zygi wants the Vikings to win. Zygi has shown that he is willing to do his best to make them a winning team.

A stadium deal will be made eventually. I cannot imagine the Vikings moving or the people from Minnesota letting them move.


How many lakes does L.A. have???? And why are they still called the Lakers???? I have relatives that live in Mn most of them have written thier reps asking for support of the stadium

Prophet
01-26-2006, 12:46 AM
"DEVIKINGFAN!" wrote:

"Prophet" wrote:

Wilf wants the Vikings to win, not because he is a Vikings fan. He wants them to win so he can get a new stadium and make more money from his investment.

Personally, I don't care what his motivations are. We want the Vikings to win and Zygi wants the Vikings to win. Zygi has shown that he is willing to do his best to make them a winning team.

A stadium deal will be made eventually. I cannot imagine the Vikings moving or the people from Minnesota letting them move.


How many lakes does L.A. have???? And why are they still called the Lakers???? I have relatives that live in Mn most of them have written thier reps asking for support of the stadium

How many hockey teams does Texas have?

LAVike
01-26-2006, 01:26 AM
"DEVIKINGFAN!" wrote:

"Prophet" wrote:

Wilf wants the Vikings to win, not because he is a Vikings fan. He wants them to win so he can get a new stadium and make more money from his investment.

Personally, I don't care what his motivations are. We want the Vikings to win and Zygi wants the Vikings to win. Zygi has shown that he is willing to do his best to make them a winning team.

A stadium deal will be made eventually. I cannot imagine the Vikings moving or the people from Minnesota letting them move.


How many lakes does L.A. have???? And why are they still called the Lakers???? I have relatives that live in Mn most of them have written thier reps asking for support of the stadium


Exactly. None. I always thought they should be called the LA Reservoirs or the LA Dry Lakebeds. Or how 'bout the LA Man Made Lakers. Yikes. Minneapolis should have kept the name. It's a disgrace.

collegeguyjeff
01-26-2006, 01:46 AM
this government of ours sucks and i don't think too many people would complain too much if there was a small tax. i mean common our stupid governor raised my college tuition $20 bucks a credit and college students tend to be some of the poorer people in the state.

NodakPaul
01-26-2006, 05:31 PM
Chill whackthepack. No need to be an a$$ hole. I grew up in Minnesota too, and I was also there when Norm moved the team.

Yes, there were sexual harassment suits filed against him. And yes, it probably did weigh into his decision to move the team. But to say that was the only reason is a little "conspiracy-theory-ish" don't you think? He made it very clear that he was going to move the team unless he recieved state help with the renovations. He didn't get any help, and he moved. The 'talk' about the walkway and the shops was part of the renovation.

VikesfaninWis
01-26-2006, 05:48 PM
"singersp" wrote:

Vikings ponder whether to let go of roof idea

Kevin Seifert, Star Tribune
Last update: November 29, 2005 at 10:08 PM

As the expiration of their stadium agreement draws closer, the Vikings and representatives of Anoka County are discussing whether to drop their request for $115 million in state money by eliminating plans for a retractable roof.

While still in a conceptual phase, the change would bring the project to a political match with the Minnesota Twins' ballpark proposal. Like the Twins, the Vikings could begin construction upon approval from the Legislature to bypass a referendum for a new Anoka County sales tax.

Costs for the $560 million open-air stadium in Blaine would be split equally by the Vikings and the county. About $95 million of the Vikings' contribution would come from an NFL loan; Anoka County would generate its financing from a 0.75 percent county sales tax.

"It's a plausible scenario," said Lester Bagley, Vikings vice president of public affairs and stadium development. "If the bills come up next session, and the Twins want nothing but an endorsement and we want an endorsement plus state money for a roof, then our deal is harder to do. [Owner] Zygi Wilf has made clear his preference is to have an open-air stadium. The political situation might make that more conducive."

The Vikings' deal with Anoka County, announced Sept. 20 and geared toward a potential special session of the Legislature, will expire Dec. 31. It represented a compromise between Wilf's vision of an open-air stadium and Anoka County's hopes for a fixed roof that it believes would make the facility a year-round sports venue.

Steve Novak, the county's stadium project manager, said Tuesday local leaders still prefer a fixed roof but believe the state should shoulder the costs because it will benefit from the events a domed stadium would attract.

"We need some sort of state participation to pay for a roof," Novak said. "Right now we don't have that. If that were to continue, that will raise other issues down the road. We would deal with those then. Hopefully, the state will come to its senses and we won't have to worry about that."

A roof -- fixed or retractable -- has long been considered a way to enhance the value of a new NFL stadium. Wilf, however, believes an open-air stadium would draw the franchise closer to its historic roots and also provide a long-term competitive advantage.

Bagley said Wilf, after touring outdoor stadiums in Seattle, Green Bay and other NFL cities, is considering alternative ways to make the stadium a year-round destination -- including an atrium with restaurants and retail outlets, similar to Green Bay's Lambeau Field.

"We respect the agreement we have with Anoka County," Bagley said. "Zygi has a strong personal opinion on the roof, but he also knows he has a partner that wants to put real money into the project. But with the agreement expiring at the end of the year, there may be room to explore other options."

Etc.

• Cornerback Fred Smoot will sit out Sunday's game at Detroit, coach Mike Tice said Tuesday after reviewing the results of a CT scan performed Monday on Smoot's fractured right collarbone. Smoot, who returned to practice last week, is at least another week away from playing.

• Hall of Fame defensive lineman Carl Eller and former running back Chuck Foreman will accompany the Vikings to Detroit this weekend as part of Wilf's new alumni program.



If Wilf would go with the idea of not having a roof, would that hurt the Vikings chances of having a SB in the future? I thought that the NFL, went with stadiums with roofs? I may be mistaken, but that is what I thought..

MnFan_in_Canada
01-26-2006, 05:54 PM
"VikesfaninWis" wrote:

If Wilf would go with the idea of not having a roof, would that hurt the Vikings chances of having a SB in the future? I thought that the NFL, went with stadiums with roofs? I may be mistaken, but that is what I thought..

It would severly damage the chances of Mn getting a SB. To date, the only cold weather cities that have hosted the SB had domes. I know there was some talk recently (the last year) about Giants Stadium hosting a SB, but I think that was dismissed pretty quickly.

snowinapril
01-26-2006, 06:12 PM
"MnFan_in_Canada" wrote:

"VikesfaninWis" wrote:

If Wilf would go with the idea of not having a roof, would that hurt the Vikings chances of having a SB in the future? I thought that the NFL, went with stadiums with roofs? I may be mistaken, but that is what I thought..

It would severly damage the chances of Mn getting a SB. To date, the only cold weather cities that have hosted the SB had domes. I know there was some talk recently (the last year) about Giants Stadium hosting a SB, but I think that was dismissed pretty quickly.

I really think that WIlf needs to reevaluate the retractable roof in order to get this to pass. A new stadium can almost guarantee a Suber Bowl, but if it is in the North, it has to have a roof and heat.

Look at KC, they will be putting a roof on Arrowhead just to have a SB there in ten years.

Being able to say we will generate a Hundres of Millions of dollars of economy for just one week, helps make it worth while for the state to want to host the SB. Plus, it is advertiseent for the state.

NodakPaul
01-26-2006, 06:22 PM
The only two cities in the northern United States to have hosted the Super Bowl are Detroit and Minneapolis. Both had domes. It doesn't rule out the possibility, but it does hurt us. Look at Seattle. Qwest Field is an awesome open air stadium that opened in 2002, there is no SuperBowl scheduled through 2010.

As for me, I agree with Wilf's assertions that an open air stadium would bring us back to our roots and give us another type of home field advantage. But I would rather that we went with the retractable roof design so we could lock in a future SB date.

ultravikingfan
01-26-2006, 06:31 PM
"NodakPaul" wrote:

The only two cities in the northern United States to have hosted the Super Bowl are Detroit and Minneapolis. Both had domes. It doesn't rule out the possibility, but it does hurt us. Look at Seattle. Qwest Field is an awesome open air stadium that opened in 2002, there is no SuperBowl scheduled through 2010.

As for me, I agree with Wilf's assertions that an open air stadium would bring us back to our roots and give us another type of home field advantage. But I would rather that we went with the retractable roof design so we could lock in a future SB date.

Add Indy to that list.

finnishvikingsfan
01-26-2006, 10:30 PM
"SJHILL" wrote:

As long as they stay in the state of Minnesota, I don't care. pooh, I don't care if they're up in International Falls.A new stadium(outdoors) would just rock.


I would love it if they were up here. That would be the true frozen tundra.

tarkenton10
01-27-2006, 04:03 PM
Snow - State income tax vary but the average is around 2%. 2% of 85,000,000 is 1.7 million a year in state tax. The state is being stupid, they have no idea how much money the Vikings generate for the state. They will realize when they lose the Vikings and their seats in the state's government for being shortsighted a$$e$!!!!

RK.
01-27-2006, 09:52 PM
The super bowl will never be played in MN in an open air stadium in Feb. Never never never never. It's only macho kid fans who think its cool playing in freezing cold and snow that even dream of that. Players don't like it, coach's don't like it, most fans don't like it. Many good players don't want to play in stadiums like that. It hurts their career stats. Its hard enough playing against teams without having to play against the weather too. If they build an open air stadium it will sit vacant not being used from Jan till spring most years. No Money coming in, no concerts, no other uses than football. That makes it a lot less attractive as an investment. It costs money every month its sitting there vacant. And it restricts the economic impact on the place where it is built. IMO it also makes it more likely that the Vikes will move where they can make more money year round with a community that wants to be a partner with them.
My suggestion is the people and fans in MN need to make it clear they want their state to support the Vikes and build a state of the art stadium that can be used year round and can host the Super Bowl from time to time. This whole idea of lets see how little we can build is really short sighted. :sad:

As I said before Sacramento would love to have a NFL franchise and would step up to build a great year round stadium here. And we are not the only ones. :smile:

sleepagent
01-27-2006, 10:21 PM
Minnesota has not been to a Super Bowl since we went indoors. We should quit worring about hosting a Super Bowl and start the process to win one. Power running, a Tenacious Defense, and solid everywhere else will get us in no matter where the game is played.

singersp
01-29-2006, 02:37 AM
Jan 28, 2006 5:17 pm US/Central

No Re-Election For Pro-Vikings Stadium Legislator

(AP) Blaine, Minn. A state lawmaker who has pushed for a proposed Minnesota Vikings stadium in Anoka County said he will not seek re-election.

But Rep. Andy Westerberg, R-Blaine, Minn., said grass-roots opposition to the stadium proposal in recent months was not a factor in his decision.

He said he decided against running for a fifth term because he always supported term limits and wanted to pursue other opportunities, including a potential run for another elective office. But he declined to be more specific on that possibility.

The Vikings want to build a $675 million stadium in Blaine, surrounded by retail shops and office buildings. The Legislature is asked to approve an exemption to state law requiring a referendum on a countywide sales tax that would generate $280 million to help build it.

Westerberg said he will continue to push hard for the stadium proposal during the 2006 session, which begins March 1.

"I really, really, really like the stadium proposal," he said.

Dan Erhart, an Anoka County Commissioner who is a stadium supporter, said Westerberg is "very important to this process." Asked if he was worried about the stadium's chances in the upcoming session, he said, "It would've been easier if he ran for office again."

Lester Bagley, vice president of public affairs and stadium development for the Vikings, said Westerberg will be missed after his term ends this fall but "this project stands tall."

Rep. Connie Bernardy, DFL-Fridley, who occupies the other House seat in the district, said DFLer Scott Kranz was preparing to challenge Westerberg. Two Republicans -- Robyn West and Brad Biers -- also had formed campaign committees.

http://wcco.com/local/local_story_028171630.html

cc21
01-29-2006, 03:11 AM
I really like the Metrodome and think we should keep that. Just give it some upgrades or something instead of making a new stadium.

NodakPaul
01-29-2006, 03:34 PM
I really like the Metrodome and think we should keep that. Just give it some upgrades or something instead of making a new stadium.

Upgrades really wouldn't solve the problems. There are not enough suites or seats, for one. There is no way to renovate a dome to add them either. I don't think the metrodome can exapnd to support enough seats to host a superbowl anymore either.

There also are not enough bathrooms or concession stands. And no more room to add them.

Parking is also damn near impossible downtown. I personally hate having to park at Rapid Park for tailgating and then bus to the dome. Plus tailgating popularity has fallen off since the Washington street lots went under construction.

I do actually like going to the dome still. It isn't a horrible place to watch a football game (but it is really bas for baseball). But it is still time for a new stadium.

Plus, aad to the mix that there are pleanty of other cities in the US who would LOVE to build a stadium to get a NFL team in... I don't want to see the VIkings move.

NordicNed
01-29-2006, 03:40 PM
I'de love to see a New Stadium..

They should design it to resemble a huge viking long boat......

inside the boat is the field and seating and all. The roof could be retracktable, they could make the roof seem like the sails of a boat..

Put up the sails or take them down..

singersp
02-06-2006, 01:36 PM
From KFFL

Vikings | Meeting to be held to discuss new stadium
Sun, 5 Feb 2006 07:19:05 -0800

The Star Tribune reports the Minnesota Vikings and members of Gov. Tim Pawlenty's staff have made plans to discuss the team's financing plan for a new stadium in Anoka County.

Vikings vice president of public affairs and stadium development Lester Bagley said the sides will conduct a "financial workshop" to hash out details of Wilf's $675 million proposal to build a stadium in Blaine. That meeting could happen within the next week.

According to the framework financing plan, owner Zygi Wilf and the NFL would contribute $280 million to the project. Anoka County would raise $280 million through a 0.75 percent countywide sales tax; the state would be asked to speed up $115 million in infrastructure projects and also bypass a law requiring local referendums for tax increases.

singersp
02-11-2006, 02:59 PM
Posted on Sat, Feb. 11, 2006

Vikings will present stadium plans to Blaine

BY DON SEEHOLZER
Pioneer Press

The Vikings will lay out the details of their stadium development project Thursday at a hearing before the Blaine City Council.

Vikings vice president of public affairs and stadium development Lester Bagley said the team will talk about its vision for a combination of sports and retail/entertainment complexes it would like to build on 700 acres in Blaine and the benefits of the complexes to the state.

http://www.twincities.com/mld/twincities/13845363.htm

Owner Zygi Wilf could speak for the Vikings, and the team's architect/planner and traffic consultant will discuss the development's potential impact on the area.

Bagley said there is no date set for a follow-up meeting with Gov. Tim Pawlenty, who met with Wilf last week to discuss the team's financing plans for the new stadium.

"We look forward to getting together, per the governor's direction, as soon as we can," Bagley said.

Duluth and Fargo, N.D., in addition to Sioux Falls, S.D., announced plans this week to make pitches to be host to training camps for the Vikings, but Bagley said there have been no discussions and no decisions have been made.

"Summer is when we will turn our attention to it," he said.

The Vikings will train in Mankato this summer for the 41st consecutive year.
Blando deal close: Although scouts have contracts that expire after the draft, another key Vikings staff member has one that ends more imminently.

Dave Blando, the director of football administration, has a contract that runs out at the end of this month. But Blando, who negotiates contracts and manages the salary cap with Rob Brzezinski, the team's vice president of football operations, is expected to work out a new long-term contract before the start of free agency next month.

Skillful pair: Vikings free safety Darren Sharper and wide receiver Koren Robinson are among the players scheduled to participate in a Pro Bowl skills challenge that will air at 5 tonight on ESPN.

Sharper and Robinson, the Vikings' only Pro Bowl representatives, will compete in an obstacle course challenge that also is scheduled to include Kansas City running back Larry Johnson, Indianapolis linebacker Cato June and Dallas safety Roy Williams.

The Pro Bowl will be played Sunday at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu.
Having a blast: Wilf was at Lake Mille Lacs on Friday for a sponsors dinner for today's 11th annual Arctic Blast Snowmobile Rally.

Several former and current Vikings players, including offensive tackle Bryant McKinnie and kicker Paul Edinger, are scheduled to attend.

Registration costs $35 and begins at 10 a.m. at any of the six Blast Points. For a list of those locations or for more information, call 952-828-6577 or visit www.vikings.com.

Last year's event raised more than $37,000 for the Viking Children's Fund.
Briefly: Center Matt Birk will open a new restaurant the first week of March in downtown St. Paul. The restaurant's name is Matt B's Supper Club.

Sean Jensen contributed to this report. Don Seeholzer can be reached at dseeholzer@pioneerpress.com.

singersp
02-11-2006, 03:02 PM
Posted on Fri, Feb. 10, 2006

Wilf pays a visit to Blaine

BY CHARLEY WALTERS
Pioneer Press

Zygi Wilf and some of his real estate partners on Wednesday were in Blaine, where the Vikings' owner hopes to get a new stadium built.

singersp
02-11-2006, 03:28 PM
"Don't discount the possibility of Vikings owner Zygi Wilf building his own stadium, without a roof, if the stadium proposal in Blaine isn't approved."

http://www.twincities.com/mld/twincities/news/columnists/13794429.htm

singersp
02-14-2006, 02:14 PM
Wilf to unveil land plan Thursday

During a county hearing scheduled for Thursday, the Vikings are expected to release details of owner Zygi Wilf's $1 billion plan to develop land around his proposed stadium in Anoka County.

Kevin Seifert, Star Tribune
Last update: February 14, 2006 – 1:00 AM

During a county hearing scheduled for Thursday, the Vikings are expected to release details of owner Zygi Wilf's $1 billion plan to develop land around his proposed stadium in Anoka County.

Wilf and the county recently extended their memorandum of understanding for building and operating a $675 million stadium in Blaine. That agreement includes a financing package; the Vikings/NFL would contribute $280 million, the county would raise $280 million and the state would provide $115 million in infrastructure improvements.

Wilf has met recently with Gov. Tim Pawlenty, and the team hopes to schedule a financial workshop with members of his office. The team soon will launch a major advertising campaign and remains hopeful that the Legislature will consider its financing bill this spring.

Etc.

• Kelby Krabbenhoft, who is heading an effort to bring the Vikings' training camp to Sioux Falls, S.D., reiterated Monday that his group will not participate in a bidding war with Duluth or Fargo, N.D. Business leaders in both cities also have expressed interest. Krabbenhoft's committee is scheduled to meet Friday.

• Former Vikings strength and conditioning coach Kurtis Shultz has been hired by the Buccaneers as assistant strength and conditioning coach. He leaves for Tampa today.

Mark Craig contributed to this report

Land Plan (http://www.startribune.com/510/story/245243.html)

NordicNed
02-14-2006, 02:22 PM
Nice to see Zygi, working hard on the stadium deal, and most importantly improving the Vikings overall Team Look....

nephilimstorm
02-14-2006, 04:48 PM
Go get em Zygi, Ive been at the Metrodome I had to stand in line for a toilet for 1 hr...thank the gods i made it lol....by the time that happened my bladder nearly exploded

ChiTownVike
02-14-2006, 04:58 PM
"nephilimstorm" wrote:

Go get em Zygi, Ive been at the Metrodome I had to stand in line for a toilet for 1 hr...thank the gods i made it lol....by the time that happened my bladder nearly exploded

LAMO that reminds me of a funny story I read in game informer or some magazine like that maybe 1-2 years ago:

Some guy just bought Kingdom of Hearts ( A disney video game) and came home and played it for like 2 hours and then he had to go to the bathroom, he ignored the urge for 5 hours and then HIS BLADDER BURST!!!!

I sware on my life this is a true story and it shows you that video games can really affect you!

Prophet
02-16-2006, 12:58 AM
Link (http://www.twincities.com/mld/twincities/sports/columnists/charley_walters/13874607.htm)
Posted on Wed, Feb. 15, 2006
WILF READIES $1 BILLION PLANWILF READIES $1 BILLION PLAN
SHOOTER CHARLEYWALTERS

Vikings owner Zygi Wilf was in town Tuesday preparing for Thursday's informational meeting with the Blaine City Council, which will hear details of his plan for more than $1 billion in private development.

Wilf's development plan includes shops and restaurants, residences, offices, small businesses, Vikings corporate offices, a team hall of fame, a hotel and a medical facility that would be in use year-round.

) The Vikings remain uninterested in a stadium referendum. Among reasons, they say, is that it could kill chances for a Twins ballpark as well as a football stadium. Wilf remains strongly in favor of three new stadiums — one for the football Gophers as well.

) When a front-page Sunday story in the Newark Star-Ledger reported that Minnesota Wild players, as well as other NHL players, were under investigation related to a Phoenix Coyotes assistant coach's alleged involvement in a New Jersey gambling ring, Wild assistant general manager Tom Lynn telephoned the newspaper.

"I called the reporter and asked him if it was really Minnesota Wild players," Lynn said Tuesday. "I was completely confused because we had no indication that anyone around here was involved, and investigators had basically approached people already, and we hadn't gotten any calls. So what's going on?

"I asked him if he would please check again with his sources. He said he would check and call me back. He was apologetic, and said apparently something happened where they were trying to catch up with a visiting player when he was coming through Minnesota. It had nothing to do with the Wild. He said they would run a correction."

Tuesday, the newspaper ran a correction.

"There was nothing to it all along," Lynn said. "We just didn't want to overdo it."

Some electronic media outlets in the Twin Cities, though, went with the Newark Star-Ledger's uncorrected story.

) The Twins have become more international than ever. The organization has players within its system from 11 countries.

The Twins have 141 players from the United States, 47 from Venezuela, 29 from the Dominican Republic, 17 from Australia, six from Puerto Rico, five from Canada, three from the Netherlands, two from Mexico and one each from Cuba, the Czech Republic and St. Maarten.

"Everyone's in search of talent, and you want to stay competitive in the industry, so you go wherever to find the talent," Twins director of minor leagues Jim Rantz said.

) Tom Lehman, the U.S. Ryder Cup captain and former Gopher, finished tied for seventh in the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am last weekend despite making a first-day triple bogey on a par 3 and a final-day double bogey on a par 5. He will play this week in the Nissan Open at Riviera Country Club in Los Angeles.

) University of St. Thomas softball coach John Tschida, who led that school to two national softball championships and St. Mary's to one national softball title, is involved internationally in softball as a coach, official and player. He was disappointed and somewhat surprised by the recent decision not to reinstate softball and baseball as Olympic sports after the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

"It's amazing because softball and baseball make a lot of funding money for the Olympics to promote the sports in different countries," Tschida said. "And it's really sad because softball is one of the last team sports for females in the Olympics. It's hearsay, but I was in Malaysia just before Christmas last year and the president of the Olympic committee for Malaysia wasn't in favor of continuing softball because she felt her country probably would never be able to medal in it.

"Also, I think there's some anti-American sentiment, and the steroid issue in major league baseball, and not sending our best players to compete didn't help."

) If the favored University of St. Thomas men's basketball team defeats visiting Concordia (Moorhead) tonight, it will clinch at least a tie for the MIAC championship and will have home-court advantage for league playoffs.

Charley Walters' column appears Sundays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. He can be reached at cwalters@pioneerpress.com.

singersp
02-16-2006, 01:56 PM
Posted on Thu, Feb. 16, 2006

Follow the money, says Vikings stadium point man

LEADING OFF WITH BOBSANSEVERE

I was having a pleasant chat with Lester Bagley, the Vikings' point man for a new stadium. Then I stepped over the line. I suggested that if the Vikings couldn't get Anoka County and the state to kick in funds for a new stadium in Blaine, owner Zygi Wilf would be left with three options: Build with his own money, stay at the Metrodome or move.

Apparently, such talk is heresy to team officials. Especially the part about Zygi building the stadium on his own.

"When Zygi bought the Vikings and immediately said, 'I won't move the team,' people said, 'Great. Get back in line.' People also said, 'Why did you give up leverage?' Having a developer who wants to put a billion dollars into our economy, that's leverage," Bagley said.

Wilf plans to meet with Blaine city officials tonight to discuss his idea for a $1 billion-plus development complex. A stadium is the centerpiece of his proposal.

"If some out-of-state developer said he was interested in making a billion-dollar investment into our economy, political leaders would be falling over themselves," Bagley said. "Because of the stadium, people are frozen.

They don't know what to do. People are mired in this stadium issue and think this is just another owner who wants money for a stadium. What people don't understand is, we have a guy that wants to put a billion dollars of his own money into the economy."

I get that. Thousands of jobs and millions in tax dollars would come out of such a development. Unfortunately for Wilf, I'm not one of the folks he has to convince. Politicians with votes are.

Bob Sansevere can be reached at bsansevere@pioneerpress.com

Follow the money (http://www.twincities.com/mld/pioneerpress/13883482.htm)

singersp
02-16-2006, 02:22 PM
Vikings broaden pitch on stadium

The team seeks to gain ground by championing the project's economic benefits.

Anthony Lonetree
Star Tribune
Last update: February 16, 2006 – 12:04 AM

The Minnesota Vikings stadium campaign gears up anew tonight with a pitch to set aside politics for a moment and to take in instead: the Northern Lights at Blaine.
Team owner Zygi Wilf is set to present to the Blaine City Council a newly refined vision for the stadium site that emphasizes the economic development projects that he'd help finance in the area surrounding his proposed $675 million stadium.

Wilf and his partners said they plan to put $1 billion in the newly christened Northern Lights at Blaine complex -- an investment that team vice president Lester Bagley said Wednesday is certain to spur economic growth throughout the region.

The full $1 billion commitment, however, hinges on public support for the stadium.

That support would include financial contributions of $280 million from Anoka County and $115 million from the state.

Although short on details, the team's plans include not only the retail shops, corporate offices and residential development first pitched last fall, but also a medical facility and large retail anchor store on the scale of a Cabela's, Bagley said.

He declined to name any potential tenants Wednesday.

The Vikings generally are seen as running third in a three-team race with the Minnesota Twins and Gophers in gaining state legislative approval this year for a new stadium. Bagley said: "We're not saying anyone should be first, second or third. We're saying this [the plan and growth it could bring] is an opportunity to solve them all."

Wilf met two weeks ago with Gov. Tim Pawlenty, Bagley said, and again Tuesday with David Gaither, his chief of staff: "The good news, from our perspective, is they are engaged seriously ... and they have told us the objective is to get this done," Bagley said.

Brian McClung, the governor's spokesman, gave a more measured take on the talks Wednesday: "The governor has expressed that we're open to further communication," he said. "We've got a lot on the plate for what will be a short session, but we've committed to having additional discussions with the Vikings."

House Speaker Steve Sviggum, R-Kenyon, has said that he does not expect the Vikings to be "on the agenda" for stadium discussions this year.

A lighted tour

A look at the team's drawings, plus an interview Wednesday with Bagley, suggests several scenarios for future stadium visits.

To the east would be an enclosed, lighted promenade providing easy access, he said, to the stadium or to retail stops and other entertainment venues. To the southwest would be lots that would be open to tailgaters, who then could take a tram, Bagley said, along the edge of preserved wetland areas to the stadium.

Bagley said the team wants to create a year-round complex that could attract families on a game day. Some members could watch the Vikings play, he said, while others explored the other entertainment options.

The team also is in discussions to perhaps add an IMAX theater to the mix, he said.

The Blaine site totals 740 acres -- of which 400 acres are deemed developable. Wilf has about half of those developable acres under contract, said Bagley, and would build on the site even if a stadium proposal were to fall through. "But the $1 billion doesn't happen without the stadium piece of it," Bagley added. "The stadium is the anchor."

The $1 billion would include the team's proposed $280 million contribution to the stadium. If the entire site were developed as planned, Bagley said, the total pricetag for the project would be between $1.4 billion and $1.5 billion.

Told of Wilf's planned investment in the project, Ron Holch, organizer of Taxpayers for an Anoka County Stadium Referendum, said: "If he's bringing all this money in, why doesn't he build his own stadium? If this is such a good deal for us, why isn't he paying for it? There's something wrong with this picture when a rich guy says, 'I'm going to help you out. Pay for my stadium.' There's no logic to it."

Other possibilities

Tonight's appearance marks the team's first formal presentation to the Blaine council regarding the stadium site. Its memorandum of understanding to build the $675 million retractable-roof stadium is with Anoka County, and calls for $280 million to come from the Vikings/NFL, $280 million from the county and $115 million from the state.

Bryan Schafer, city planning director, said the city also has been exploring several other conceptual options for the site. No development will occur, he added, until after a master plan for the area, including environmental review, is completed this summer.

A corporate campus is among the other proposed uses. Unlike the Vikings' plan, no other idea has a specific developer attached to it, he said.


[i]Staff Writers David Peterson and Jill Burcum contributed to this report.

Anthony Lonetree • 612-673-4455

Vikings broaden pitch on stadium (http://www.startribune.com/510/story/250376.html)

COJOMAY
02-16-2006, 04:56 PM
Here's an excellent piece by Bob Sensevere at the Pioneer Press
Bob Sansevere

I was having a pleasant chat with Lester Bagley, the Vikings' point man for a new stadium. Then I stepped over the line. I suggested that if the Vikings couldn't get Anoka County and the state to kick in funds for a new stadium in Blaine, owner Zygi Wilf would be left with three options: Build with his own money, stay at the Metrodome or move.

Apparently, such talk is heresy to team officials. Especially the part about Zygi building the stadium on his own.

"When Zygi bought the Vikings and immediately said, 'I won't move the team,' people said, 'Great. Get back in line.' People also said, 'Why did you give up leverage?' Having a developer who wants to put a billion dollars into our economy, that's leverage," Bagley said.

Wilf plans to meet with Blaine city officials tonight to discuss his idea for a $1 billion-plus development complex. A stadium is the centerpiece of his proposal.

"If some out-of-state developer said he was interested in making a billion-dollar investment into our economy, political leaders would be falling over themselves," Bagley said. "Because of the stadium, people are frozen. They don't know what to do. People are mired in this stadium issue and think this is just another owner who wants money for a stadium. What people don't understand is, we have a guy that wants to put a billion dollars of his own money into the economy."

I get that. Thousands of jobs and millions in tax dollars would come out of such a development. Unfortunately for Wilf, I'm not one of the folks he has to convince. Politicians with votes are.

singersp
02-16-2006, 08:04 PM
[quote="COJOMAY"]Here's an excellent piece by Bob Sensevere at the Pioneer Press.............


I know, see page 7. :wink:

snowinapril
02-16-2006, 08:27 PM
This makes my head hurt!

Trying to convince people that is. I am done!

For now!

COJOMAY
02-16-2006, 09:04 PM
Whoops -- Sorry Singer. I should have looked closer!

singersp
02-22-2006, 02:28 PM
From the Star News
Posted: 2/21/06

Wilf proposal unveiled

by Elyse Kaner
ECM Publishers

They came clad in black pin-striped suits, herringbone sport jackets and plaid flannel shirts. The women came, too.

More than 100 people packed the Blaine City Council chambers Feb. 16 to hear Zygi Wilf’s proposal for what he calls the “crowning jewel of sports” complexes. Some were in favor, some not. The audience spilled into an overflow room where it watched the presentation on closed-circuit TV.

Blaine has finally come of age. It has sprouted from a quaint town where nearly five decades ago a Holstein, every now and then, would meander across Central Avenue, to today’s burgeoning city when it’s rare not to hear of a housing development or new business popping up for discussion at the council’s bi-monthly meetings.

Now the Minnesota Vikings are planning to come to town – in a grandiose manner.

Ziggy Wilf, property developer and owner of the Minnesota Vikings, laid out a $1.5 billion economic development proposal for Blaine for a complex he calls The Minnesota Sports Retail and Entertainment Center. The proposal includes $1 billion in private investments.

“We are becoming more optimistic and more aggressive about our prospect of success,” Wilf said about the mammoth project.

Wilf unveiled his proposal during the communications portion of Blaine’s council meeting. The presentation was for informational purposes only. Residents did not have the opportunity to respond.

That would come later, Mayor Tom Ryan said.

The 740-acre development site, proposed at Lexington Avenue and 109th Avenue, would include a mix of retail shops, restaurants, housing, small businesses, corporate offices, a hotel and medical facility. Two hundred-sixty acres are wetlands that would be preserved and featured in the design plans.

“We cherish this opportunity to incorporate this in the entire project,” Wilf said.

The plans call for a $675 million Minnesota Vikings stadium with a retractable roof. The stadium would seat 68,500, but would be expandable for up to 72,000 seats to host large events, like a Super Bowl.

The stadium would have 600 toilets for the ladies and about 500 for the men—no more waiting in lines to use bathrooms.

The complex would become the new headquarters for the Vikings. It would feature 150,000 square feet of training facilities and an indoor practice area.

A new Minnesota Vikings Hall of Fame, Valhalla, will be incorporated into the retail center, including 20,000 square feet of exhibits and interactive features.

A unique feature of the complex design is The Northern Lights of Blaine, a light display emulating the heavenly phenomenon.

“Imagine scoring a touchdown and the northern lights in the shopping center light up and come into the stadium,” said presenter David Murphy of Crawford Architects.

Crawford has designed the Olympic Stadium for the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games, Turner Field in Atlanta, Qwest Field in Seattle and the renovation of Lambeau Field in Green Bay, to name a few of his stadium projects.

The team estimates the development could usher in 4,000 jobs for construction workers and 9,000 jobs for overall development.

Michael Monahan, SRF consulting principal, another presenter, said the project would involve road improvements and working with agencies to preserve the wetlands.

“I do believe that what Zygi and company is proposing tonight will be something that 50 years from now or even 10 years from now, we can look back and our kids can look back and say, ‘we all had a part in making that happen,’” Monahan said.

Blaine is working on a master plan and Alternative Urban Area Review (comprehensive environmental assessment) for the Pheasant Ridge area.

The land use plans being considered for the area are a Vikings stadium, with administrative offices, facilities and retail development and a new master plan that would include a corporate office with manufacturing and limited retail manufacturing without a football stadium.

The AUAR study and finalizing of the master plan is expected to be finished by approximately June 15.

Pheasant Ridge is bounded by I-35W, Lexington Avenue, Naples Street N.E. and 109th Avenue N.E.

“We’ll be the crowning jewel of sports not only in the Midwest, but in the entire country,” Wilf said.

Ryan recalled about 20 years ago he talked with the late Gov. Rudy Perpich about a dream of a sports center “and everybody laughed,” he said.

Today, Blaine is home to the Schwan Center, the National Sports Center and the TPC of the Twin Cities. “Visions and dreams do happen in a city,” Ryan said.

In a press conference following his presentation Wilf said, “Under no circumstances will I ever move the Minnesota Vikings out of Minnesota.”


Elyse Kaner is at elyse.kaner@ecm-inc.com.

Stadium (http://www.erstarnews.com/2006/February/21stadiumfinal.html)

singersp
02-22-2006, 02:59 PM
Listening to the news this morning it looks pretty positive that the Twins stadium will go thru & the Vikings have to wait until next year because the Gophers are 2nd in line.

singersp
03-01-2006, 02:00 PM
Zygi Wilf: Determined dealmaker

Zygi Wilf has emerged as a get-it-done team owner set on making a $675 million Vikings stadium in Blaine a reality.

Mike Kaszuba, Star Tribune
Last update: March 01, 2006 – 12:44 AM

As Zygi Wilf negotiated last summer with Anoka County to build a $675 million football stadium in Blaine, the new owner of the Minnesota Vikings already seemed impatient with Gov. Tim Pawlenty's lukewarm response.
Wilf urged team and county officials to "TELL the governor we're going to be heard," and indicated he might go around Pawlenty by going "to fans with the plan," according to county documents. One Vikings official continued in the same forceful manner, saying that the "importance of Anoka County to the governor's reelection" should be stressed.

Wilf's resolve and the details of how he cut the deal with Anoka County, which has pledged $280 million to the stadium project through a countywide sales tax, are illustrated in documents obtained by the Star Tribune through a public records request. With the Vikings now pushing the project through a statewide ad campaign, the early meetings show how Wilf and the team strategized to make sure the Vikings' stadium plan did not take a back seat to stadium proposals for the Minnesota Twins and the University of Minnesota.

From the outset, Wilf emerged as a new, get-it-done owner who paid attention to details. With his developer's background, Wilf attended meetings on everything from the stadium's roof to its intricate financing, asking at one point whether the county would accelerate an upgrade on 109th Avenue near the project.

In many cases, the documents show, Wilf and the county shared the same enthusiasm for the stadium proposal -- and worked together to shape how the media reported the story. But the behind-the-scenes view of the negotiations provided by the documents also shows some of the issues county officials confronted as they became partners with the new Vikings owner.

Among the details:

• Though a county resolution in 2004 capped Anoka County's contribution to the stadium at $240 million, with allowances for inflationary increases, the county and Vikings kept pushing the figure. By the time the agreement was announced in September, the county had agreed to $280 million. During the negotiations, the county indicated it would go to $290 million and Wilf floated a plan that would take the county to $300 million.

• Despite the public partnership, there has been friction between the county and the Vikings over hiring consultants. Shortly after Wilf bought the team, the county worried that the Vikings planned to hire Hammes Co., a national consulting firm that Anoka County and Blaine had already paid $446,000 for help developing its negotiating position with the state and team.

The friction continued with the Vikings' hiring of Winner & Mandabach Campaigns, a California public relations company, to help with the campaign to win support for the stadium. The firm was brought in without county input, and county officials were dismayed when they arranged a meeting for the firm with community leaders last month -- only to watch Winner & Mandabach officials cut the meeting short in order to catch an airline flight.

"Were we fully integrated? ... Probably not," said Steve Novak, Anoka County's government services director. "Corporations are not used to input, they're not used to public settings." The Vikings are "very hard to help, but we're not giving up on them."

Buy the Metrodome?

Wilf's ambitious agenda emerged at an Aug. 5 meeting. There, in addition to asking about myriad details, Wilf even said he wanted to own the Metrodome, where the Vikings now play in downtown Minneapolis, and the underlying land. Asked recently about Wilf's interest in the Metrodome, Lester Bagley, the Vikings' vice president of public affairs, dismissed the discussion as simply part of Wilf's overall desire to pursue other development opportunities in the Twin Cities.

But Bill Lester, executive director of the Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission, which manages the Metrodome, said Wilf has talked about the possibility, if only vaguely. "He said he certainly thought it had some potential," Lester said.

On Aug. 16, Wilf was again exhorting team and county officials to push ahead. "Tell the gov -- we're ready -- how can you not address our deal now," according to notes from the meeting taken by Terry Johnson, the county's finance director.

At an Aug. 31 meeting, Wilf announced that $750 million was his "top end" price tag for the stadium. He was also briefed on which local officials would be cooperative, according to notes from the meeting compiled by Johnson. "City of Blaine -- cooperative? [County Commissioner Dan Erhart responded] yes." As for the director of the National Sports Center, which is near the stadium site, Wilf was advised that "he'll deal."

As the team and county discussed a stadium roof, Wilf said he was struggling to get NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue to commit to having a Super Bowl in Minnesota. "Approached Tagliabue on Super Bowl. Cannot get a definitive answer but with [a roof] will make a finalist," Wilf told county officials at a meeting, according to the documents.

The county, meanwhile, tried to help Wilf learn the political lay of the land. Novak, a former DFL state senator, said he has escorted Wilf to political fundraisers, including one for state Attorney General Mike Hatch, a DFLer running against Pawlenty.

Throughout the negotiations, the county struggled with how to convince the public there should not be a referendum -- as required by law -- on using county sales tax money. A grass-roots campaign has already persuaded several city councils in the county to pass resolutions calling for such a referendum.

In one memo, Jay McLinden, the county administrator, said officials should stress that the stadium would mean "jobs -- pride -- [and] tax base" to the county, and could, for example, be the site of a Neil Diamond concert.

McLinden also made a list to anticipate critics who would argue the county did not want a referendum because the issue might be defeated. Under the heading, "Why do you not want to hear from the public?" McLinden responded by writing, "we hear from the public every day."

Extending the deal's deadline

Documents also suggest that the agreement's original Dec. 31 expiration date may have been a negotiating ploy to create pressure on legislators to act. Just before the agreement was announced at a news conference Sept. 20, the Vikings and the county huddled one final time to discuss whether to include a Dec. 31 expiration.

Team and county officials, according to the documents, decided against using a June 30, 2006 expiration because it "then takes pressure off to consider us with the Twins" -- a nod to the fact that the Minnesota Twins were also seeking legislative approval for a new stadium, and the fact that the Vikings wanted the Legislature to consider both stadiums simultaneously.

The plan did not work. With the Legislature showing no signs of taking action on either stadium proposal, the Vikings announced in December that they would extend the Dec. 31 deadline through this summer.

As the announcement neared, team and county officials tried to offset arguments that the Vikings would be seen as forcing themselves into the stadium debate with the Twins and the university. "Don't bring Twins & Gophers down. Broader fan base can get more support for all three," notes from one meeting stated.

The Vikings stadium has generally been considered to have the least amount of legislative support of the three stadium proposals considered at the Capitol this year. In trying to improve its legislative chances, Novak said the team and the county have had talks with the Twins about possibly presenting a united front at the Legislature.

Though the talks have been "friendly," said Novak, the Twins seem set on going their separate ways. "They've been resistant to formalizing any partnership," he said.

Mike Kaszuba • 612-673-4388

Zygi Wilf: Determined dealmaker (http://www.startribune.com/510/story/277099.html)

NordicNed
03-01-2006, 03:29 PM
What happened to the peoples wishes....

I say they should just put it out to vote and have the people decide....

Screw the politicians.......Most of them are a bunch of blow hards anyways......They only want in if they can make money off it.....