MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Crews in Minneapolis braved the elements Saturday to reconstruct one of the centerpieces of the downtown Super Bowl experience.

The American Birkebeiner International Bridge is being set up on Nicollet Mall, over Ninth Street.

The 200-foot structure is an icon of the country’s largest cross-country ski race, which takes place in Hayward, Wisconsin, every year.

Last year, the race had to be canceled due to poor winter conditions. But race officials say this year should be different.

“We have about a foot or so of snow on the ground, and if we could run the race tomorrow we’d be in great shape,” American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation Executive Director Ben Popp said. “But right now, the temperatures are on our side, so we’re hoping come end of February, after the Vikings win the Super Bowl, we’ll be ready to have a great race in Northern Wisconsin.”

On average, the Birkie draws more than 13,000 athletes to the Northwoods.


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