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Despite Extreme Cold, Warm Feelings Abound After NHL Winter Classic

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- The Minnesota Wild may have lost Saturday's NHL Winter Classic against the St. Louis Blues, but the game was a big win for Target Field and nearby businesses.

"There was an incredible amount of work that went into it from a ton of people, but the ambiance in the building last night and the experience of having that many people at Target Field was spectacular," said Matt Hoy, the Twins' senior vice president of operations.

The outdoor rink stayed up Sunday, and season ticket holders and corporate partners had a chance to go skating. Once again, temperatures were in the single digits. Hoy says there were no significant issues resulting from the weather on Saturday.

"I'm only aware of one slip-and-fall postgame outside the stadium, but other than that, knock on wood, I think everyone had a good time and there weren't a lot of frostbite issues, which in that type of environment with that cold is a miracle, but I think is fantastic," Hoy said.

2022 NHL Winter Classic
(credit: CBS)

Diamone Allen, the general manager of First Draft Taproom in nearby North Loop, probably wishes the Winter Classic happened more often.

"I think we got quite a bit of traffic that came just for the game, and it kind of lasted throughout all the way up until they left just before in the nick of time to get there," Allen said. "Most of the guests were in amazing spirits."

Hoy says the rink will start being disassembled Monday night, and then preparations for baseball season will begin in late February and early March.

"It was a great showcase for our facility … and frankly our community, to show what we can do in the middle of a really bad cold snap in the middle of winter here in Minnesota," Hoy said.

More than 38,000 fans reportedly attended the Winter Classic.


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