They’re only worth … $1.15 billion. At ESPN, Ben Goessling reads the latest valuation listing at Forbes and writes, “Forbes Magazine’s annual valuations of all 32 NFL teams are in, and while the Minnesota Vikings still rank among the bottom half of the league, the franchise is once again estimated to be worth more than $1 billion — and its value should continue to rise. The Vikings are projected to be worth $1.15 billion, ranking 20th in the NFL, according to Forbes. That valuation is up from the $1.07 billion figure Forbes gave the Vikings in 2013, and represents a $319 million increase since the Minnesota State Legislature approved funding for the Vikings’ new stadium in May 2012.” That Zygi … he knows what he’s doing.
Thirteen!? Tom Scheck of MPR reports, “Republican Jeff Johnson is calling on DFL Governor Mark Dayton to agree to 13 debates including two at the Minnesota State Fair. Johnson, the Republican nominee for governor, made the pitch during a news conference at the State Fair this morning. Governor Dayton has declined an invitation by MPR News to participate in a state fair debate. Johnson said he believes Dayton is ducking debates. He said he hopes Dayton reconsiders.” Not to be overly skeptical, but my guess is there’s enough voter interest for maybe two.
The speed (or lack thereof) of the Green Line gets a look from Frederick Melo in the PiPress. “ … the 11-mile, 23-station Green Line between downtown St. Paul and downtown Minneapolis has been averaging about 52 minutes, or nearly five minutes per mile. ‘I’ve ridden it, and it stops at every light and every station. It doesn’t seem reliable in terms of timing,’ said Jessica Treat, executive director of the transportation advocacy group St. Paul Smart Trips. Metro Transit officials and transit advocates say the main problem is that St. Paul’s traffic signals are not syncing well with the Green Line, a delay that many officials are laying squarely at the foot of the city.”
The AP has a story up about how the “funny guy” in our Senate race … isn’t Al Franken. “McFadden’s campaign is working with the same advertising team behind a panned-but-popular ad from Iowa’s Republican U.S. Senate nominee, Jodi Ernst, which drew on her childhood castrating hogs as proof she’ll know “how to cut pork” in Washington. McFadden’s football spot drew several days of coverage in early summer, with enough questions about whether he was hit in the stomach or the groin that the whole question was dubbed ‘Groin Gate.’ (McFadden’s campaign insists it was a gut shot.) ‘That had a lasting impact. It gets people talking and it adds a little levity to the race,’ said Republican political operative Ben Golnik.”
Good news for Batman: John Myers of the Forum News Service reports, “If your schedule allows you to take showers, run the dishwasher and wash and dry clothes at night or on weekends, Minnesota Power might have a deal for you. The Duluth-based utility is, for the first time, offering off-peak electric rates to some of its customers in Duluth and Hermantown. The utility in recent days has mailed letters to 24,000 customers in the area explaining the program and asking its customers if they want to try the off-peak program that offers lower rates for electricity used between 10 p.m. and 8 a.m. on weekdays … .”
The borers are in Rochester … . The AP via the Albert Lea Tribune says, “Minnesota officials have confirmed trees in Olmsted County are infested with the destructive emerald ash borer. The state Department of Agriculture said Wednesday the county will join Hennepin, Houston, Ramsey and Winona counties in a state and federal quarantine to prevent the infestation from spreading. That means ash logs, lumber, chips and tree waste can’t be taken out of the county without a department certificate.”
So his story is … he accidentally shot himself … four times. The AP reports, “Pine County authorities say they’ve arrested a 38-year-old woman for shooting a man after he told authorities his four gunshot wounds were self-inflicted. The Sheriff’s Office said Wednesday that authorities responded to a reported shooting Tuesday. Deputies found a man who said he had accidentally shot himself. … Investigators say evidence suggests the wounds weren’t self-inflicted. Sheriff Robin Cole says people can’t usually shoot themselves more than once.”
I haven’t been there yet and I’m already a little woozy … . a KARE-TV story reminds viewer/readers, “Lift Bridge Brewing Company and the Ball Park Cafe will again delight the taste buds of those heading to the Minnesota State Fair with Lift Bridge Mini-Donut Beer. It will be sold exclusively at Ball Park Cafe only from Aug. 21-Sept. 1. Lift Bridge Mini-Donut Beer was first introduced in 2013. This year’s brew will again be available in a glass rimmed with cinnamon sugar to help give it that real mini donut appeal.” So why can’t they dip the rim in bacon grease?
This is NOT a political campaign story … Andy Rathbun of the PiPress alerts readers to the fact that, “Stock dogs and the sheep they chase are coming back to Hudson, Wis. The Wisconsin Working Stock Dog Associations’ 29th annual Labor Day stock dog trial will offer visitors a chance to see dogs and their handlers work to control sheep through a course. More than 80 dogs and handlers from seven states and Canada are expected to compete in the event … .”