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Does your college town suck? University of Minnesota

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Row, row, row your boat...somewhere else.

New to the line up this season: we will be examining the various college towns of Wisconsin’s opponents. We’ll be answering all of the important questions – Is it a state capital? What is the population? Does it have a Culver’s?

Facts:

City: Minneapolis, Minnesota

Size: 57.51 square miles

Location: 44°58′55″N 93°16′09″W

Population: 429,954 (2020)

State Capital? No

Time zone: Central

Landmarks: Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, Minnehaha Falls

About:

Minneapolis, home of the University of Minnesota, is a twin city (and not the good kind of twins), with St Paul. The Twin Cities are the largest conurbation in the state and in the U.S. north-central region.

It is the most populous city in the state of Minnesota and spreads out on a relatively level plain. Minneapolis contains 22 lakes and lagoons and 170 parks.

The city’s riverfront is part of the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area, with Lake Minnetonka and Minnehaha Creek in the western suburban area of the city.

Sioux and Ojibwa people were early inhabitants of the region. Louis Hennepin, a Franciscan missionary visited the area in 1680 and named St. Anthony Falls, which later provided power for Fort Snelling.

Settlers began occupying the area, west of the river in 1849 and the government granted the illegal squatters patent rights in 1855 and the village of Minneapolis was incorporated in 1856. The name was derived from the Sioux word ‘minne,’ which meant water and the Greek word, ‘polis,’ which meant city.

St. Anthony was chartered as a city in 1860 and Minneapolis in 1867 – the two cities merged as Minneapolis in 1872. The falls were an important factor in the city’s growth as a lumber and flour-milling center. Minneapolis even became the country’s top producer of flour by 1870.

Then a bunch of stuff happened and here we are, today.

One of the most-visited spots in Minneapolis is the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, which is a free attraction, in an 11-acre park featuring many art installations. One of the more famous sculptures in the park is the Spoonbridge and Cherry, which was the first work commissioned for the garden in 1988.

Sadly, you can’t even walk on the damn thing. Why call it a bridge, if it’s not meant to be walked on?

Regardless, it is an iconic piece of art, much like this blue cock.

Hahn/Cock is another sculpture located in the garden, which is fully erected at nearly 25 feet.

Per the garden’s web site, the rooster can be a symbol of pride, power, and courage or posturing and macho prowess. Fritsch has admitted that she enjoys “games with language,” and the sculpture’s tongue-in-cheek title knowingly plays on its double meaning.

With a 25-foot cock, there is a hell of a lot of macho prowess to go around.

Bars:

One bar that I have personally been to in Minneapolis is The News Room.

Which is a pretty cool bar, with walls designed as newspapers, which is pretty cool for a journalist to see and then the bar in the center of the restaurant is a ship.

I’m not sure how that couldn’t float your boat, unless you’re very stern...but I bet if you go there, you’ll think it is cool, schooner oar later.

When doing research of other local drinking establishments in Minneapolis, I found Otter’s Saloon, which is currently closed for renovations and from everything I can see, they have ZERO live otters located at the bar, so there is honestly no point in going there, they should be jailed for false advertisement.

I also did a search for the best places to watch the Golden Gophers and surprisingly there actually were quite a few places that came up, which I was shocked at, because why would you watch them at all?

The Pourhouse was the first location listed on Eater Twin Cities. They have TVs everywhere, which is a plus when watching a sport event, even if you are watching a Minnesota sport team.

Butcher & the Boar was another spot from the listed that peeked piqued my interest, as it has a four seasons beer garden…? Sadly this bar closed in 2020, but there are apparently plans in place to bring it back.

Lastly, the most important question of all, is there a Culver’s in Minneapolis? No, there is not, but there are some in its Twin City of St Paul, as well as the surrounding suburbs. (Editor’s note: including Plymouth, the best suburb of Minneapolis)

Stadium:

Huntington Bank Stadium, formerly known as TCF Bank Stadium is the home of the Minnesota Golden Gophers football team. The stadium name changed in 2021 when Huntington Bancshares purchased TCF Bank. The Bank has a capacity of 50,805 sad fans, give or take a few thousand for fans of the visiting team.

However, the stadium is designed to be expandable to 80,000, with further expansion projects. The stadium has 25,000 seats with permanent chair backs, 37 private suites, 57 loge boxes, 1,250 outdoor club seats, 250 indoor club seats and a 20,000 square foot outdoor club room for game day and non-game day usage.

Oddly enough, with all that space, it still isn’t enough room to hold P.J. Fleck’s ego. Thankfully there is no roof, so it can just expand upward.

The Minnesota Vikings used the stadium as their home stadium in 2014 and 2015 while their stadium was constructed. I was going to say that the stadium finally was able to be home to a real football team during that time, but…it’s still the Vikings.

Does your college town suck?

Of course it does, do you really have to ask?

Had I said it didn’t suck, it would likely be something featured on the Gophers’ end of the season ring, along with their three-game win streak over Nebraska, Maryland and Northwestern. Oh, and mention of Fleck’s contract extension.