Eagan, Minn. (September 11, 2020) – The Minnesota Vikings will continue to use the team's platform to bring awareness to critical issues of racism and injustice when they kick off the season this Sunday, September 13, against the Green Bay Packers.
Pregame Warmup Shirts
Throughout the pregame period, players will wear custom t-shirts with "Be the Change" verbiage on the front and the names of 200 individuals who have been killed by acts of racism or police brutality on the back. Please see a photo of the shirt here. Players may also wear NFLPA-and player-created Nike warmup t-shirts with the phrase "An injustice to one is an injustice to all of US."
End Zone Markings
The Vikings and Packers will come together in their respective end zones, which will be marked with the messages "It Takes All of Us" and "End Racism." This will be a unified league-wide message across all clubs for NFL Kickoff and home openers. Please see a photo of a sample end zone marking here.
Player Helmet Decals and Coach Hat Patches
Starting Week 1, all players have the option to wear their personal choice of helmet decals with social justice related messages or the name of a victim of systemic racism. Players can wear the decals for the first game or can choose to keep them on their helmets for the entire season. Coaches also have to option to participate with a patch on their hats. Please see a photo of the helmet decal examples here.
Three-time Grammy Award winning ensemble, Sounds of Blackness, will perform a pre-recorded rendition of the Star Spangled Banner prior to kickoff. Based out of Minneapolis-St. Paul, Sounds of Blackness has been featured on Billboard R&B and Hot Dance Music charts and has received an NAACP Image Award and four Stellar Awards. In addition to countless achievements in music, Sounds of Blackness was also been with a star on the outside mural of the iconic Minneapolis nightclub, First Avenue.
Lift Every Voice and Sing
At the conclusion of player warmups, a pre-recorded musical performance of "Lift Every Voice and Sing" by James Weldon Johnson will accompany a video showcasing the social justice work that NFL clubs and players are doing to make an impact in the community.
George Floyd Family Recognition
The Vikings will recognize the family of George Floyd, who will be inside U.S. Bank Stadium, following the performance of "Lift Every Voice and Sing."
U.S. Bank Hometown Hero: Sara and Jamil Stamschror-Lott
The Vikings will honor two members of the Twin Cities community who have donated their time and resources to give back to those in need. In 2017, Sara and Jamil Stamschror-Lott founded Creative Kuponya, an organization designed to provide therapy and healing to members in the community. On top of their work with Creative Kuponya, both Sara and Jamil work with numerous organizations to bring equality, social justice and health to the forefront of our society.
Sara and Jamil also serve as the Institute Director and Wellness Director, respectively, at All Square, a local nonprofit social enterprise that invests in the minds and lives of formerly incarcerated individuals. The Vikings social justice committee has committed to supporting All Square's programming and business in a variety of ways, including bringing more awareness to All Square's mission and supporting the launch of the Fellow Fund (Allsquarempls.com).
Along with the social justice game elements, the Vikings have also created the following fan engagement opportunities as a result of not having fans inside U.S. Bank Stadium:
Vikings Pregame All-Access show presented by U.S. Bank
The Vikings will debut a brand-new, live-streamed pregame show in 2020, bringing fans around the world inside the walls of U.S. Bank Stadium as the Vikings prepare for kickoff. Vikings Pregame All-Access debuts at 11 a.m. CT on Sunday, September 13th, leading into the team's Week 1 kickoff against the Packers- streaming live to Vikings.com, the Vikings mobile app, the Vikings Now Connected TV app, Twitter, Facebook, and Youtube. Starting one hour prior to kickoff of each 2020 home game, Pregame All-Access will deliver fans exclusive, behind-the-scenes content previously available only in stadium, including:
· Full coverage of Vikings warmups
· Live locker room cameras
· Performances by the Skol Line and Minnesota Vikings Cheerleaders
· Mark Rosen, Ben Leber and Ron Johnson will provide live Vikings pre-game commentary with the latest updates from U.S. Bank Stadium and around the league
Free Playbook Distribution via Star Tribune and Hy-Vee Stores
In previous years, the Vikings Playbook has been available to fans in U.S. Bank Stadium. This year, the team will offer the Playbook free at all 11 Minneapolis-St. Paul Hy-Vee locations. The Minneapolis Star Tribune will also package a set amount with the Sunday newspaper for every Vikings home game.
Vikings Fans in the Stands Presented by Caribou Coffee
The Vikings have partnered with Caribou Coffee to allow fans to purchase a cutout to be placed in the stands for all home games at U.S. Bank Stadium. The cutouts are available to the fans for pickup at the conclusion of the season, and 100% of the net proceeds will go to support charitable causes within the community. Fans can visit Vikings.com/cutouts for more information or to place an order.