MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A sellout crowd is expected at Mall of America Field on Sunday when the Minnesota Vikings play the Detroit Lions during their final game at the Metrodome. That has police and dome staff preparing for the anything.
“We’re adding nearly double the amount of Minneapolis police officers,” said Jeff Anderson, executive director of communications for the Vikings. “Typically, we have 500 Whelan Security staff, about 60 Minneapolis police officers. For this weekend, we’ll have closer to 600 Whelan Security Staff and just over 100 Minneapolis police officers.”
On Christmas Eve, during the 49ers final game at the Candlestick Park, 81 people were ejected and 30 fans were arrested. Some fans were arrested after they tried stealing chairs from the park.
“We put in a zero tolerance policy,” Anderson said. “We’re not going to allow any of the Metrodome property to leave the stadium.”
Minneapolis police spokesman John Elder says fans will see the increased presence not only inside dome, but outside as well. It’s also being covered financially by the NFL.
“We’re going to be doing increased screening for people coming in,” said Elder. “Don’t bring screw drivers, don’t bring anything that looks like it’s going to be used to be breaking things down or taking things.”
The Vikings plan to give fans who attend the game a commemorative pennant that will be placed on every seat.
The lowest price for a seat to the final game is $111 according to TicketKing’s website. Mike Nowakowski with TicketKing says at one point during the season you could find a ticket for as low as $10.
“I’ve never seen an event where it literally didn’t matter and there was such a crazy amount of demand for tickets,” Nowakowski said. “If it wasn’t the last game at the dome, we would throw away thousands of tickets for this game.”
Nowakowski says even that though people complain the dome is a dump, it’s really the only venue they’ve ever known.