MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Studies have been done about how much work productivity is lost during the NCAA tournament.

And at one Edina house, they don’t even try to hide it.

For 19 years, Bernie Dahlin has held a two-day March Madness party.

“These are the first two days of vacation that go on the calendar every year, so my boss is well aware,” said guest Bryan Hins.

The cars lined up and down on Dahlin’s Edina street are not here for a garage sale.

“I love it, I love it,” said co-host Adina Dahlin. “It’s like a holy day in our house.”

They know opening tip-off of the tournament means an open spot on Dahlin’s couch.

(credit: CBS)

“After 19 years it becomes more of a tradition, and people know what it’s all about and they enjoy it just as much as I do,” said Bernie.

He played basketball at Southwest High School and then at Southwest State. These days, he’s gone from dunking basketballs to dunking chips in a salsa he invented called “Double Take.”

His March Madness party begins Thursday morning and runs non-stop all the way through Friday night. Hundreds of friends show up. and many have been coming since year one.

“I got off a conference call seven minutes early today to make sure I got here in time for tip off!” said Bryan.

Having the Gophers in it is just an added bonus.

“More people showed up on time this year than the last couple years,” said guest Pete Korchik.

Over the years, it’s been great food, great company and great stories. A weekday at Bernie’s, and he’s looking forward to the next 19 years.

“When we get older we get busy, and too busy to always hang out, so if there is a good excuse to do it, we’ll do it,” said Bernie. “And this is a great excuse.”

John Lauritsen

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