By John Lauritsen

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — We are two days away from the Minnesota Vikings’ first home opener in two years, with people in the stands. During a year without fans in the stand, the team made safety a priority for everyone entering U.S. Bank Stadium.

“We partnered with Ecolab and made the stadium a science-certified venue. We partnered with 3M and have microbial film on certain surfaces. The building has gone cashless,” Andrew Miller, chief operating officer for the Vikings, said.

Miller added the team also encourages wearing masks.

“(It’s an) indoor, public venue. We strongly encourage our fans to wear masks,” said Miller.

They’ll be scanning only digital tickets at the door, and the bag policy remains the same. The Vikings are expecting a sellout, but limited tickets remain.

As if the first game with fans in 636 days wasn’t enough, on Thursday the Vikings, with help from Aramark, gave the Purple Faithful a taste of what else is waiting for them.

“We have a wonderful display of foods and the chefs are busy working right now,” said chef Toufik Halimi.”We have a slider and we have what we call a turkey stack on a baguette.”

In the suites, fans will find a new take on walleye cakes. In the concourse, local vendors include Revival’s chicken sandwich, cheese curds from Curds and Cakes, wings from Heritage wings, and T-Rex cookies. Be Graceful Cafe is also offering a vegan option for game day.

“It’s a Sloppy Joe with homemade ingredients — onions, peppers, some spices and a kick. It really has a very good taste,” Lisa Buckhalton, of Be Graceful Café, said.

Fans can find a full list of concessions on the U.S. Bank Stadium website.

“Last year we had no fans at our home games, and our number-one business priority this year has been to find and welcome Vikings fans back to our regular season home games. The time is upon us and we couldn’t be more excited,” said Miller.

The Vikings say some tickets remain on Ticket Exchange and Stub Hub. They are encouraging fans to get in their seats by 3 p.m. for a special pregame show on Sunday.

John Lauritsen