As Marcus Foligno pushed 1-year-old Camila on a chair and pulled 3-year-old Olivia with a rope, the smiles never left their rosy faces.
“Say hiiiiiiiiiiii,” Foligno told Camila as he sped her past Dani Spurgeon, her husband, injured Wild captain Jared Spurgeon, and their four children.
As players and their significant others, as parents and kids and siblings and lifelong friends posed for hundreds of pictures and took scores of videos, Dani Spurgeon could barely handle the frigid air long enough to manipulate the camera on her iPhone.
“Danielle’s trying to thaw out,” Spurgeon said, laughing.
It was so perfect.
Snow fell throughout the Wild’s practice. It stopped just in time for 200 friends and family members of Wild players, in town for Saturday night’s Winter Classic at the picturesque winter wonderland that the Minnesota Twins’ Target Field has suddenly been transformed into, to stream “Lake Winter Classic” for a family skate.
Naturally, the temperature also happened to drop 10 degrees to a frosty 8, which if meteorologists are correct, should feel like springtime when the puck drops between the Wild and St. Louis Blues under the stadium’s lights for what is expected to be the coldest Winter Classic game in NHL history.
As Cam Talbot helped 5-year-old son, Landon, onto the bench just as Brett McLean’s son, Nixon, who was wearing a Kirill Kaprizov No. 97 jersey, skated over to give him a fist bump, Talbot’s wife, Kelly, rushed Landon’s twin sister, Sloane, to the car because her toes were frozen.
Yet, every picture that features cute, little Sloane shows her with an ear-to-ear smile.