Vikings Alumni Step Up Big During Annual Playground Build

Posted by Mike Wobschall on June 4, 2011 – 6:03 am

The Vikings organization, along with Toro and KaBOOM!, conducted its 6th annual playground build on Friday. The event, which is held in early June every year, took place at Northport Elementary School in Brooklyn Center. As usual, every member of the Vikings organization was present at the event.

Because of the work stoppage, though, current Vikings players were not at the event. Traditionally, the entire Vikings roster and coaching staff deploys to the playground build following a minicamp practice to help put the finishing touches on the project. So in the current players’ absence this year, several Vikings alumni joined the current Vikings coaching staff in the effort.

Matt Blair mixes concrete for the playground's foundation

"Benchwarmer" Bob Lurtsema is always a fun guy to have around

 Alumni who participated in the event included: Matt Blair, Chuck Foreman, Ed Lurtsema, Ed McDaniel, Dave Osborn, John Randle, Stu Voigt and Ricky Young.

Dave Osborn, Chuck Foreman and Stu Voigt pause for a photo

 Aside from mixing concrete, moving mulch and mingling with each other, the alumni spent time talking with students of Northport Elementary, signing autographs and posing in photos. It was also fun to see some of the greatest Vikings to ever suit up visit with members of the Vikings coaching staff.

Fellow LBs Mike Singletary and Matt Blair


John Randle, standing next to Leslie Frazier, waives to the crowd during the ribbon-cutting ceremony

 Vikings Executive Director of Community Development/Youth Football Brad Madson did another excellent job of organizing this event on the Vikings side and even more credit goes to him for reaching out to alumni in a year when current players were not able to attend. Madson has a good relationship with many former players and that’s a big reason why so many of them turned out on Friday and were willing to pitch in and help.

Madson commented during the ribbon-cutting ceremony that he will return to Northport Elementary School later in the year (once the work stoppage is over) with current players to allow students and staff a chance to meet some of their favorite football players.

We’ll have more coverage of the playground build, including photos and video, in the days ahead.

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