City leaders say they are excited to debut a new game-day experience for Vikings fans this weekend. Railgating will start this Sunday before the noon game between the Minnesotans Vikings and San Francisco 49ers.
The light rail-adjacent tailgating experience will allow food trucks and other vendors to set up shop along the tracks between the center of downtown Minneapolis and the Metrodome.
The city will close down a stretch of 5th Street, between Portland Avenue South and 5th Avenue South -- along the light rail line -- on game days as that stretch of downtown between the Warehouse District and the Dome becomes "the Purple Path."
"Come early, stay late and paint the town purple!" Mayor R.T. Rybak said.
The fan festivities will start early -- at 7 a.m. -- and will run until about an hour after kickoff. Rybak, who plans to be at Brother's Bar and is offering to buy a beer for the fan with the most outlandish outfit, said he hopes "railgating" will improve the tailgating experience before Vikings games.
"We have promised an enhanced, urban, game-day experience for Vikings fans downtown, and today, we're starting to deliver," Rybak said. "With this first step of connecting the main game-day nodes along the new Purple Path, we're highlighting the great entertainment options that Minneapolis offers fans, and taking the opportunity to add to them."