The scene in Sioux Falls on Sunday afternoon, I can only imagine, played out in several towns along I-29 in South Dakota.
UND fans crowded restaurants and bars, stranded after a winter storm forced officials to close I-29 from Sioux Falls to Fargo. The huge contingent of fans who made the trip to Omaha for the outdoor game got stuck on the way home.
For myself and Herald writer Tom Miller, we were driving with three friends and decided to stop in Sioux Falls. We knew I-29 was closed ahead and decided to get stranded someplace where we could do some things.
First, we hit Buffalo Wild Wings for lunch. Then, I pulled out a Lebowski quote out and said: “Let’s go bowling.” The rest of the group liked that idea so we spent the afternoon battling each other on the lanes. Several UND fans tweeted me pictures of them doing the same in Brookings.
Then, we retired back to the hotel, where at least 75 UND fans happened to be staying as well. A hotel employee just laughed when I asked if this is more action than they usually see on a Sunday night. He said when he started his shift, there were 13 rooms reserved. Within six hours, there were 137 rooms booked.
So, we spent the night by the pool, hanging out with a great group of fans from Hazen, N.D., who found ways to make things interesting… like getting 70 people to buy rubber ducks from the gift shop, write their names on them and race them down the water slide with money on the line for the winner. It got intense.
Hopefully, the roads will get plowed and everyone can get home tomorrow (actually, a couple of the Hazen fans were hoping to get stranded another day). The team spent the night in Sisseton, and fans seems to be spread out between Watertown, Brookings and Sioux Falls.
The Herald has a photo gallery of fans passing the time while stranded. Check it out here.
And here’s a picture of the epic rubber duck races from the hotel.