If you are lucky enough to have a Super Bowl LII ticket and be a member of the tribe, the Orthodox Jewish community of Minneapolis has got an offer for you: “Be our guest!” With the game just over a week away and the teams competing already decided, football fans are preparing in all sorts of ways – including the big day before the big day. This year, Minneapolis is the proud host, although they are still nursing their wounds over their home team’s recent loss at qualifying. The Orthodox Jewish community there is not only up for the challenge of hosting out-of-town guests, but as a city in which frum and football go hand-in-hand, they have the home field advantage in more ways than one.
The connection starts with the fact that the Vikings’ owners, The Wilfs, are an observant Jewish family. “They have done wonderful things within our community,” says shul member Wendy Khabie. “They are very philanthropic and have helped us build football in our city.” The Orthodox community is inspired by their giving and is thrilled to open up their homes to frum football fans for Shabbos meals and accommodations preceeding the big game. Khabie relates that when visiting another community, “You often rely on the hospitality of the community. No questions asked, we do that. We celebrate that in our community. Come early and get a good vibe and celebrate Shabbos with us.” When the Vikings were still in the running for the playoffs, the community was rallied for their success. Despite the loss, the kehilla is still thrilled for the opportunity to host.
People might think of Minneapolis as a “flyover city,” without realizing all that it has to offer. Minneapolis itself is part of a state that boasts 10,000 lakes. It is home to the longest continuous indoor skyway in the world and a huge winter festival that draws thousands. The Minneapolis Sculpture Garden and the Mall of America are also big draws, in addition to the rich football history. The Minneapolis community has three Orthodox shuls, all of which are geographically closeby to each other: Darchei Noam, Beis Yisroel and Knesseth Israel are all in St. Louis Park and range in hashkafa from an Agudah to two Orthodox Union affiliated shuls, one more to the right than the other. With a mikvah, full eruv and kosher options, the Orthodox Jewish football fan will find a lot of resource in the community. “There are two kosher restaurants and a strictly kosher grocery store as well as a large kosher assortment at Lunds Byerlys, an upscale grocery store. People can still keep kosher and not have to hole up in a hotel for the weekend.”
Khabie, who works with Darchei Noam, the shul that is leading the hospitality initiative, says that they have been in touch with the Super Bowl Host Committee and they have set up a concierge service to help ticket-holders meet their needs during and around the game at US Bank stadium. If anyone calls asking for kosher accomodations, they will be directed to Rabbi Max Davis of Darchei Noam to set up home hospitality or address their other concerns. “There will be plenty of activities going on.” Rabbi Davis contributes, “If you’re lucky enough to have tickets to the game, we’d like to offer you an opportunity to spend Shabbos with our shul family.”
Even if you’re an Eagles fan.
Please email Rabbi Davis directly at firstname.lastname@example.org with hospitality requests.