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Wells Fargo State of Hockey Flag Tour Recap

by Staff Writer / Minnesota Wild

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August 12, 2005 - St. Cloud, Minnesota - Day 5

The downtown St. Cloud Wells Fargo location was our host for today’s visit as the crew wrapped up Week One of the Wells Fargo State of Hockey Flag Tour and Relay. When we arrived, a group of fans were on hand to warmly greet us. One fan carried a team photo of the 1980 Olympic team for Mike Ramsey to sign. Minnesota Wild Chairman Bob Naegele, Jr. joined us for today’s stop to sign some autographs and chat with Minnesota Wild fans.

We headed outside the Wells Fargo building for our flag relay. Many spirited kids from the St. Cloud area proudly carried the flag down 4th Street to the amusement of the onlookers nearby. All of the kids received a free State of Hockey t-shirt in appreciation of their participation.

August 11, 2005 - Duluth, Minnesota - Day 4
We woke up this morning in beautiful Duluth, Minnesota on the sparkling shores of Lake Superior. We kicked off our day at the Wells Fargo location in downtown. Some local youth hockey players were on hand to greet us and were excited to meet our crew. Many fans came through our autograph line and signed the giant State of Hockey flag. Wells Fargo had some cookies for the visitors and were gracious hosts.

From Wells Fargo, we went down to Canal Park for the flag relay. It was a fitting location for a run since that is where the finish line is for the world famous Grandma’s Marathon. We had a great group of youth hockey players and Wild fans on hand to hoist the flag as they ran through the park. The kids were very excited to be a part of the relay and all of them received a t-shirt for their hard work.

We were sad to be leaving the great people in Duluth, home of the Bulldogs, but we were equally excited to head to St. Cloud, home of the Huskies, for Friday’s visit.

August 10, 2005 - Grand Rapids, Minnesota - Day 3
We woke up to a gorgeous morning in Bemidji and headed for KOZY radio statoin in Grand Rapids. The folks at KOZY did some outstanding live interviews with Mike, Bob, and Tom. After an hour at the station, we headed over to the Chamber of Commerce parking lot for our visit. Two tents were set up in the parking lot where we were set up by Charter Communications and the Grand Rapids Amateur Hockey Association. A throng of youngsters came through to get autographs and eat a hot dog or two for lunch.

The flag relay took place around Central School in downtown Grand Rapids. We had a few high school kids and some younger youth hockey players to carry the State of Hockey flag through the town of Grand Rapids, home of Judy Garland who played Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz.

After an hour drive, we made it to Duluth in time for a late lunch at the world famous Grandma’s Restaurant. We rested a bit before dinner at Bellisio’s italian restaurant in the popular Canal Park area. The hockey stories were flowing with focus on Mike’s experience in the 1980 Olympics and the Wild’s playoff run in 2003.

August 9, 2005 - Bemidji, Minnesota - Day 2
The Flag Tour started out this morning at the Wells Fargo Westridge location in beautiful Bemidji, Minnesota. Many youth hockey players from the area welcomed us to a tent set-up in the parking lot. We started by signing autographs for the fans in attendance and encouraged the visitors to sign the giant State of Hockey flag. Wells Fargo was a generous host while the Bemidji Youth Hockey Association was on hand to grill hot dogs and they also held a raffle to help raise money.

After our visit at the Wells Fargo, many of the kids and some moms drove over to the lakefront for the State of Hockey flag relay. We had a great turnout and the kids were eager to participate. The crew enjoyed a round of golf at Bemidji Town and Country Club began this afternoon. Following that, we ate dinner at The Northwoods Lodge. We are off to Grand Rapids early Wednesday morning. See you there!

August 8, 2005 – Eveleth, Minnesota – Day 1
Day 1 of the 2005 Wells Fargo State of Hockey Flag Tour & Relay began at Wild headquarters near the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul. We headed out for Eveleth, Minnesota, home of the United States Hockey Hall of Fame, early this morning for our visit at the local Wells Fargo location.

Fans of all ages were on hand to sign the 15 x 25 foot State of Hockey flag and to obtain autographs from Wild Assistant Coaches Bob Mason and Mike Ramsey. Visitors received a State of Hockey car flag and were treated to coffee and cookies courtesy of Wells Fargo.

Following the bank visit, we made our way to the United States Hockey Hall of Fame for the flag relay. Local youth and parents all took their turn running with the State of Hockey flag. Tom Sersha, Executive Director of the United States Hockey Hall of Fame, was the first flag bearer in the relay. Each runner received State of Hockey t-shirts for their participation. Mike and Bob had a great time looking through the exhibits at the Hall, especially the documentary on the1980 U.S. Olympic Miracle on Ice team that Ramsey was a part of. After we finished at the Hockey Hall of Fame, we had lunch at The Deluxe in downtown Eveleth before traveling to Bemidji for two nights.

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