Two Harbors, MN (Northland's NewsCenter) --- Former Minnesota Vikings legends gathered this weekend in Two Harbors for a charity fundraiser put on by former "Purple People Eater" Jim Marshall.
On Friday, the 16 former players signed autographs and posed for pictures at Vikings Legends Sports Bar & Grill, of which Marshall is a co-owner.
On Saturday, the legendary Vikes were the guests of honor at a celebrity golf tournament at Lakeview National Golf Course in Two Harbors.
The whole weekend was aimed at raising money for Two Harbors student-athletes, with a goal of $25,000.
Marshall said he thought of the weekend a few months ago, and it seemed like the right thing to do for the community.
"Back during my day, we didn't have to pay anything," said Marshall, a Vikings defensive end from 1961-79. "We had gym class and basketball, and if you wanted to go out for football you could do that. There's a lot of people out there who have a lot of talent, and we found that out when they were on the field. Nowadays, you have to pay to play, so we're trying to get as much as we can for the kids to help them fund the athletic programs that suit them."
Vikings players were happy to help out the kids and community of Two Harbors, but said it was an extra bonus to be able to see their old playing buddies.
"It's something that never dies," said Carl Eller, a Minnesota defensive end from 1964-78. "The memories only get better, and it's good to see each other. This is really great for us to get together here in Two Harbors, this part of Minnesota, so it's a great time for us."
"Vikings fans are great, they always have been," said Doug Sutherland, a Vikings defensive tackle from 1971-80. "We were a special part, we played in a lot of Super Bowls. At least we got to the Super Bowl. It's fun to see the guys, to see Jim [Marshall] and Carl [Eller]. I played in between those guys, and we had a great time."
For one of the Vikings legends, the trip to the Northland had some special significance.
Ted Brown, a Vikings running back from 1979-86, is the father of UMD Bulldogs hockey standout J.T. Brown, who just this winter helped the Bulldogs to the NCAA national championship.
Brown was sporting a UMD championship hat on Friday night, and talked a little about his son and his hockey career.
"I'm so proud of that kid," Brown said. "He's come a long way. He's a much better kid than a hockey player. He's just a good kid, and I love him to death. He's been everything I wanted him to be and then some."
Posted by Zach Schneider