Austin fans enjoy last game at Metrodome

Published 10:43am Monday, December 30, 2013

Closing out the Dome

Second-grader William Lawhead, a huge Minnesota Vikings fan, summed up being able to watch the last game in the Metrodome with one word: Awesome.

The Southgate Elementary student has gone with his dad, Brandon Lawhead, to almost every Vikings home game this season. And with seats near the sideline in the end zone, William got to meet several of the historical mascots, and former Vikings center and Pro Bowler Matt Birk, who were on hand Sunday for the stadium’s sendoff as the Vikings’ took down the Detroit Lions 14-13. William was even on the Jumbotron right before the postgame ceremony.

William, whose favorite player is Adrian Peterson, said it was “pretty exciting” to meet the mascots, and “pretty awesome” to be on the Jumbotron.

“He loves to go to games,” Brandon, a lawyer at Lawhead Law Offices in Austin, said. “I think he really enjoyed the whole experience.”

Brandon, who has been a fan his entire life and had even gone to some games in the Vikings’ previous home, Metropolitan Stadium, said he has fond memories of the Metrodome.

“I thought it was a nice experience. Ever since I was a child, that’s the stadium that I’ve gone to,” Brandon said, adding that he was surprised at the fan turnout Sunday given the Vikings’ 5-10-1 record.

He said he was surprised at how many fans find the Vikings’ home from 1982 to 2013 meaningful, even though those years were filled with more heartbreak than championships. The Minnesota Twins won two World Series while they called the Metrodome home though, he added.

“I was surprised by how many people stayed for the ceremony afterward,” he said.

But then again, he and William stayed. And William wouldn’t have missed it.

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