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the day Adrian Peterson showed up in my front yard…

February 26, 2014

(This post has been sitting in my draft folder for almost a year.  For whatever reason, I decided to post it today.  Perhaps this winter has me dreaming of warmer weather and the day when we can take full advantage of the wonderful new playground in front of our house.) 

If you’ve been a long-time reader of our blog (and have a great memory), you might remember a few years back when I wrote about the playground in front of our house being torn down.

Below is an almost two-year old Sam watching the destruction of his favorite stomping grounds.  I’ll never forget worrying that the playground demolition would bring an onslaught of tears along with it, but to my surprise, having a construction site in your own front yard is a little boy’s dream come true. Sam didn’t leave this spot until the entire structure was torn down and removed.  I really should have provided popcorn.

For two years now, we have waited and wondered if anything would ever come from our city’s decision to tear down the old (but dearly loved) school playground.

Playground Final-3

Playground Final-2

 To our great delight, the beautiful, hundred year-old school which has sat vacant for nine years is now under major renovations to be re-opened next fall, and with school renovations under way comes a new playground!

We caught word that not only would the school district be rebuilding a new playground, but that they would also be building new picnic tables, raised garden beds, an outdoor theatre-style classroom for the students, and new benches.

So where does Adrian Peterson come in to all of this?

Turns out, the Minnesota Vikings contribute a large amount of money each year to a community building project in order to provide a school or neighborhood in the Twin Cities with new playground equipment.  And not only do the Vikings donate the funds, they also donate their time to come and help put the finishing touches on the building project.

Last week, there was quite the community event taking place in front of our home. A hundred or so volunteers showed up, rolled up their sleeves, and got to work.  About two hours in, a giant bus pulled up and out poured the entire Minnesota Vikings team along with their coaches and mascot.

I will spare you the details of how utterly clueless I was about the Vikings until my friends quickly gave me a crash course as the players were piling out of the bus.  Turns out, Adrian Peterson was named MVP of the NFL in 2013.  Who knew?! (the entire country, Jen, the entire country.) Apparently it goes without saying, but I don’t follow the NFL very closely.  I’ll watch a college football game any day, but I can do without the rest.  I showed up this day for the new playground and free cupcakes.

I am happy to admit, though, by the end of the afternoon, I was a bona fide Adrian Peterson and Christian Ponder (Vikings QB) fan. Not just because they are Vikings or because they are both from Texas, but because they were both so genuinely kind to us and our kids. They were happy to sign autographs and get down on our kid’s level and take pictures with them.  In case our kids forget this day, I’m glad I snapped a few pics to help them remember.

Vikings Playground-4

Vikings Playground-3

Vikings Playground-2

Vikings Playground-1

New Playground with Vikings-11

New Playground with Vikings-12

New Playground with Vikings-10

New Playground with Vikings-9

New Playground with Vikings-7

New Playground with Vikings-4

New Playground with Vikings-3

New Playground with Vikings-5

New Playground with Vikings-6

New Playground with Vikings-22

New Playground with Vikings-21

New Playground with Vikings-18

New Playground with Vikings-13

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. Cathy Hipps permalink
    February 27, 2014 6:00 am

    This was very cool, Jenny!

  2. February 27, 2014 1:50 pm

    Super cute!! I love the one of Ponder (is that Ponder?) hugging Sam. Sam’s all leaning in to the hug like a hug-for-the-photo pro. How great to have such “front row seats”!

  3. February 27, 2014 10:33 pm

    The Vikings were going to come and build a playground at Hope Academy a few years ago, but then decided against it as their partner business, Toro, balked at it being a private sectarian school. Oh what might have been, having All Day building us a new playground!

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