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Arifjan Event – Success!

Posted by Ryan Cardinal on February 25, 2012 – 2:49 pm

Vikings Radio Analyst Pete Bercich and Vikings Entertainment Network Executive Producer Bryan Harper are in Kuwait as part of the St. Paul based “Serving Our Troops” trip to visit Minnesota National Guard troops.  Below is their fifth blog entry regarding their trip so far. 

We fired up the grills and started the actual grilling at 3 pm. When all was said and done at 8 pm we had grilled 2736 Mancini’s steaks for some very appreciative troops here at Camp Arifjan Kuwait (I have heard the other sites experienced similar success).

Since the MN Nat’l Guards arrival 7-8 months ago, it has rained a total of 7 days… today was one of them. Seems like we brought more from home than just steaks as it was chilly and wet. The rain didnt set us back though… we simply set up a tent and kept working.

We had 13 people working the Arifjan project (49 overall at 5 bases) and it took focus from everyone to get the job done. There were several moments when the emphatic thank you’s coming from the troops made you stop in your tracks a bit… they were so appreciative but yet we are so appreciative of them. Thats what Serving Our Troops is all about… we brought some “home” to them and like true Minnesotan’s, they let us know how appreciative they are.

I heard comments like, “you came all the way to Kuwait just to grill us steaks” or the best was when we’d get a request for a steak… “medium rare” and our response would be 1 or 2? The look on the faces was priceless… “I can have two?!” Of course!!

We have more MN National Guard troops over here now than ever before. They are dedicated, love serving our great nation, but certainly do miss home. Pete and I and the Serving Our Troops crew will not forget that as it reinforces why we do this… its an impactful one-of-a-kind event that accurately reflects the support of an entire state for those who sacrifice for us.

We hope you enjoyed following along this project. It’s been an honor to be a part of another Serving Our Troops project. Pete and I will recap on-air during the morning show on KFAN 100.3 FM likely on Wednesday (I’m not getting up that early on Tuesday after returning Monday night). Feel free to tune in.

For more information on Serving Our Troops, visit ServingOurTroops.com.

Previous Entries

Getting Some High-End Steaks Ready For Our Troops

Serving Our Troops in Kuwait – Arrived and Ready

LIVE from Kuwait – Power Trip Morning Show on KFAN 100.3 Friday Morning

Arrival at Camp Arifjan

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Getting Some High-End Steaks Ready For Our Troops In Kuwait

Posted by Ryan Cardinal on February 25, 2012 – 9:06 am

Vikings Radio Analyst Pete Bercich and Vikings Entertainment Network Executive Producer Bryan Harper are in Kuwait as part of the St. Paul based “Serving Our Troops” trip to visit Minnesota National Guard troops.  Below is their fourth blog entry regarding their trip so far.  Stay tuned to vikings.com for more updates over the coming days.

This morning at Camp Arifjan we prepped the steaks for grilling this afternoon/evening. It was a true team effort as all of us worked at a very steady pace to get 3000 steaks ready. A few soldiers flagged us down to communicate their excitement for this evening’s meal. Word continues to spread… should be a HUGE crowd tonight.

Oddly enough we have had some rain in Kuwait today and the sky is orange. Hopefully it doesnt rain and put a damper on the evening. We’re ready rain or shine though. Back to the grind, stay tuned to vikings.com, KFAN.com and ServingOurTroops.com for more updates as the event progresses and the 2012 project nears its end.

Previous Entries

Serving Our Troops in Kuwait – Arrived and Ready

LIVE from Kuwait – Power Trip Morning Show on KFAN 100.3 Friday Morning

Arrival at Camp Arifjan

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Arrival at Camp Arifjan

Posted by Ryan Cardinal on February 24, 2012 – 3:33 pm

Vikings Radio Analyst Pete Bercich and Vikings Entertainment Network Executive Producer Bryan Harper are in Kuwait as part of the St. Paul based “Serving Our Troops” trip to visit Minnesota National Guard troops.  Below is their third blog entry regarding their trip so far.  Stay tuned to vikings.com for more updates over the coming days.

The Serving Our Troops group split up into teams and headed out to the 5 bases today. We were briefed on important locations such as latrines, showers and dining as well as the do’s and dont’s. Shortly after that we set up for the Morning Show on KFAN 100.3 FM. All the tests failed and we were beginning to panic before KFAN technical wizard Veronica (whom we woke up at 5:20 AM CT) stepped in. Her quick guidance along with the on-site support of Lt. Ryan Doliber (Elk River, MN) saved the show.

We were very surprised to realize no delay in the on-air conversations despite being half a world away and were able to get some great guests on the show. One of the special moments was when Rep. John Kriesel called in and was connected to some folks here at Camp Arifjan as well as some from Camp Buehring that he served with in Iraq.

It was great for the soldiers to hear all the support they receive from back home. They are true Minnesotans and certainly miss being in our great state.

The soldiers are setting up a floor hockey game for us tomorrow night and we look forward to having a little fun after the work is done… that work being the grilling of 3000 made-to-order Mancini’s steaks in a 2 hour span tomorrow afternoon for some well-deserving troops.

Be sure to stay tuned to vikings.com and KFAN.com for more updates from the big event tomorrow – here at the various bases in Kuwait and at home at the River Centre in St. Paul.

ServingOurTroops.com

Previous Entries

Serving Our Troops in Kuwait – Arrived and Ready

LIVE from Kuwait – Power Trip Morning Show on KFAN 100.3 Friday Morning

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LIVE from Kuwait – Power Trip Morning Show on KFAN 100.3 Friday Morning

Posted by Ryan Cardinal on February 23, 2012 – 5:27 pm

Vikings Radio Analyst Pete Bercich and Vikings Entertainment Network Executive Producer Bryan Harper are in Kuwait as part of the St. Paul based “Serving Our Troops” trip to visit Minnesota National Guard troops.  Below is their second blog entry regarding their trip so far.  Stay tuned to vikings.com for more updates over the coming days.

Don’t forget that we will be broadcasting LIVE from Camp Arifjan in Kuwait tomorrow AM. We will have an audience of about 30-50 MN Nat’l Guard soldiers throughout the broadcast although they are working so they will be moving in and out regularly during the show. We will be LIVE at the base at the top of each hour. Vikings Radio Network Analyst Pete Bercich will handle the hosting duties from Kuwait while Cory Cove, Mike Morris and Chris Hawkey handle the show from KFAN studios.

Along with Harper and Bercich, Patrick Klinger from the Twins, Ted Johnson from the Wolves and Mike Dimond of FS North are here as well. Each of the sports representatives will make a quick stop on-air as well as some of our soldiers in attendance. A very special thanks to KFAN for carving out programming tomorrow’s show around our presence here.

For more information on the Serving Our Troops project, visit ServingOurTroops.com. Stay tuned to vikings.com and KFAN.com throughout the next few days for more updates.

Previous Entries

Serving Our Troops in Kuwait – Arrived and Ready


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Serving Our Troops in Kuwait – Arrived and Ready

Posted by Ryan Cardinal on February 23, 2012 – 4:54 pm

Vikings Radio Analyst Pete Bercich and Vikings Entertainment Network Executive Producer Bryan Harper are in Kuwait as part of the St. Paul based “Serving Our Troops” trip to visit Minnesota National Guard troops.  Below is their first blog entry regarding their trip so far.  Stay tuned to vikings.com for more updates over the coming days.

Today we arrived in Kuwait City… we were briefed on our schedule and attended a nice dinner at the Kuwait Palm Palace. We have a group of 49 members and will divide into 5 groups to spend the next few days visiting 5 bases: Arifjan, Ali Al Saleem, Buehring, Virginia and Patriot.

While here we will grill 13,000 steaks for various troops on the bases including 2700 Minnesota National Guard soldiers stationed over here (the most Minnesota National Guard troops ever deployed). It will be a wonderful experience as their food here is always boiled and these will be made-to-order Mancini’s (St. Paul) steaks. Harper was here with Mike Morris in 2009 and visited Iraq. We did the steak thing there and the response was truly overwhelming.

While we are grilling steaks, another Serving Our Troops group will be at the River Centre in St. Paul grilling steaks for 3,000 family members of MN Nat’l Guard Troops and providing hundreds of LIVE video connections via computer. Attendees of the home project will also see a special message from First Lady Michelle Obama.

It is a truly amazing project with tons of sponsors and volunteers that are too many to list here. Check out ServingOurTroops.com for a list of those involved or if you would like to donate.

Although our military’s involvement over here is winding down, our MN Nat’l Guard soldiers play a huge role in the withdrawal of troops and maintaining stability in the region. They are still here and we are honored to be able to give them a little bit of “home” over the next few days.

We appreciate you following along the journey and hope to keep you updated – technology-willing.

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Vikings Personnel Heading To Kuwait To Visit Troops

Posted by Ryan Cardinal on February 22, 2012 – 11:54 am

Vikings Radio Analyst Pete Bercich and Vikings Entertainment Network Executive Producer Bryan Harper are en route to Kuwait as part of the St. Paul based “Serving Our Troops” trip to visit Minnesota National Guard troops.

Bercich will connect with Mike Morris and the crew on KFAN’s Power Trip Morning Show this Friday at the top of each hour with guests LIVE from Kuwait.

Follow the trip highlights, blogs and photos on vikings.com, or on Twitter @ServingOurTroops @SOT2012 or @VikingsFootball.


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