With only three home-turf games remaining in the season, cheer on the Twin Cities' fearsome squad of sassy ladies as they run, pass, tackle, kick, shimmy, teleport, twirl, and crank call their way across the gridiron. But don't expect any shortened fields, wussy tear-away flags, or altered rules just because the players have little use for a cup—this is straight-up football, right down to the earth-shaking QB sacks, high-flying Hail Marys, and tackles that pack their own crater. This hard-hitting action, coupled with intricate strategic plays, provides more entertainment than a shaky washing-machine race through a corn maze. Additionally, on May 8, Burnsville High School will host a BirdieBall golf tournament prior to the Vixen game (not included with the Groupon), which will feature par 3 holes, field goal drives, various prizes, and an opportunity to pair football with the most brutally unforgiving of sports.
In the olden days, racetracks employed ladies on roller skates to deliver axle grease to steam-powered racecars so that they could maintain their blistering pace of 9 miles per hour. When a scuffle between two such ladies proved more entertaining than the race itself, roller derby was born. Today’s Groupon gets the Twin Cities its daily recommended dosage of kinetic estrogen. For $6, you get a general-admission ticket (a $12 value on the day of the game) to see the North Star Roller Girls battle it out in a flat-track roller-derby bout. During the Wild Wild Midwest double-header on Saturday, March 20, at 7:30 p.m., the Banger Sisters take on Delta Delta Di, while the Violent Femmes face off against the Kilmore Girls. This will be the final grudge match before the championship bout on April 10. Customers may purchase up to four Groupons. General admission tickets are good for chair and bleacher seating or standing, but not trackside seating.
After clinching their division in the 2011 season, the Minnesota Dragons return to the gridiron for another eight-game campaign in the semipro Northern Elite Football League. Among the season’s four home games, the energized roster squares off against fellow Minnesotans—and 2011 champs—the St. Paul Pioneers in a battle to determine who will lay claim to the Twin Cities and who will have to play the rest of their games at the bottom of Lake Superior. As players unsheathe their biggest plays to slay their opponents, the Dragons’ dance team spurs the players on inside the venerated Metrodome, home to the NFL’s Minnesota Vikings.
Keeping folks busy year-round is the main mission at Monticello Community Center, whether viewing movies in the park or splashing around the indoor pool and water slides. Allowing families to stay active, the fitness center welcomes visitors 16 and over to use free-weights, cardio equipment, and mirrors for flexing. Adult sports leagues organize teams for hockey and softball, while more low-key green thumbs can head to the community garden to dig in the dirt, plant, and tend to buds.
At Arlington Raceway, mud-caked vehicles roar around banked curves and fly down straightaways with the same vigor that has attracted spectators for more than 30 years. Seven different classes of wheeled racers compete every Saturday from May to September, from stock cars and sprint cars to motorized rollerbladers. After packing arms with salty popcorn (a $1 value) and frosty brews (a $2.50 value each) during a quick snack-bar run, spectators stake out general-admission seating (a $10 value each) before cheering on International Motor Contest Association–sanctioned drivers as they skid around the half-mile track. Set back speedway clocks on July 23, as vintage racers descend on the track for a symposium on antique derring-do and the impracticality of in-car Victrolas. On August 20, artful auto tamers create lifelike burnt-rubber sketches while speeding through intricate turns on Arlington Raceway's autocross course. Though not included in today’s Groupon, pit passes ($25) unlock access to the inner workings of the speedway, allowing spectators to take up-close ganders at precision autos or feed sugar cubes to their favorite drivers.
Uproarious cheers from the crowded stands compete with roaring engines zooming down Raceway Park's 1/4-mile banked asphalt track. Between April and September, weekly race events invite late-model, short-tracker, and mini stock cars to compete against one another in races that culminate in a final karaoke lap. Other festivities include Friday Night Destruction events, where motorcycles, trailers, and school buses put their axels to the test. Raceway Park also puts fans behind the wheels of real track cars during occasional racing-experience events.