Excelsior, Minn. (KMSP) - One die-hard Vikings fan went on what turned out to be a historic voyage, all without leaving his own backyard.
It's a symbol, really, of Dave Stacken's perseverance. After years of let downs, the Excelsior native refuses to lose hope in his team.
Sunday, however, he celebrated his 56th birthday and the home team’s big win aboard a Vikings-themed ice ship that he started building in November to help the Vikings "bring it home."
“The fact that Minneapolis is hosting the Super Bowl is what inspired me," Dave Stacken said. "The fact that the Vikings are as close as they are is really exciting--and a bonus.”
All hands were on deck as Stacken’s family and friends joined him to cheer on the Vikings as they faced the Saints during the first playoff game of the season.
Stacken’s youngest daughter Kelly was also his self-proclaimed “little helper” as he assembled the ship.
“I did help him drape the cloth onto the trampoline poles but he would come out every night and mist it,” Kelly said.
The ship was outfitted with memorabilia, including a TV tuned into Vikings Game Day Live and a hefty bar.
“We’re doing our part to help them pull it out,” Brian Carney, Stacken’s friend said. “It’s a lot easier to walk away from here this afternoon with a win than with a loss.”
There's an old Icelandic proverb that goes, "“You will reach your destination even though you travel slowly.”
The Vikings certainly proved that true Sunday, and hope to continue on their journey in Philadelphia next week as well. Meanwhile, Stacken got the best birthday present he could have asked for.