Red Lake Warrior Football Team invited to Minnesota Vikings Winter Park facility
RED LAKE -- The Red Lake High School football team was invited to the Minnesota Vikings' Winter Park practice facility in Eden Prairie on Saturday, October 1, 2016, where they participated in a special "chalk talk" session with Monday Night Football ESPN commentator Jon Gruden as well as Vikings staff.
The Warriors also received a $2,000 donation from the Vikings, in conjunction with ESPN, Gruden and the Dick's Sporting Goods' 'Sports Matter" initiative, for new equipment and other essential football needs.
The Warriors had the opportunity to ask Gruden some questions, then participated in a warmup session with former Vikings Pro Bowler and current director of youth football EJ Henderson. They also toured the Vikings' facilities and were fed by the team.
Footage from Saturday's event will be shown on ESPN's Monday night telecast. The Vikings take on the New York Giants at 7:30 p.m.
The Warriors, who are 0-4 this season, lost to Pine River-Backus on Friday night. From there they stayed at a hotel in St. Cloud before departing for Eden Prairie on Saturday morning.
Also attending Saturday's Q&A session will be Minneapolis North -- who Red Lake played in the Class A basketball semi-finals earlier this year -- and St. Paul Como Park.
"We definitely wanted to make sure we got a school from greater Minnesota involved," Henderson said. "And the fact that Red Lake is from the Native American community, we wanted to make sure we touched that community as well."
Thirty players went on the trip.
Photographs by Chris Jourdain and Nolan Desjarlait.