Protester jumps from parking ramp, hangs banner over video screen at All-Star Game

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A large protest banner was hanging from the right field jumbo tron during the game.

Photo: Brian Peterson, Star Tribune

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Early in the All-Star Game at Target Field, a protester gained access to the large video board in right field by jumping from a parking ramp and scaling a ladder before unfurling a banner that read "Love water not oil."

Matt Hoy, the Twins’ senior vice president of operations, said the banner was hung by someone who climbed to the top of Minneapolis’ B parking ramp and jumped to a horizontal ladder allowing them to reach the stadium. Hoy said the ramp is situated directly behind a bank of seats in right center field, topped by sponsors’ signs and the video screen, with a seven-foot gap between the structures.

Witnesses on the plaza outside Target Field told Twins officials that the activist leapt across, tied the banner to a railing, then jumped back to the parking ramp. The person had not been apprehended by the ninth inning, but Hoy said “there might be a few police officers looking for them.’’

Hoy said if they had fallen, they would have dropped all the way to the street below. “Some fool took their life into their hands to put a banner out there,’’ he said.

The banner hung for about 10 or 12 minutes before it was removed by stadium employees who are experienced at working on the structure. Wearing full safety harnesses, they climbed a 50-foot ladder in the tower adjoining the structure, walked out on the catwalk and took it down.

It was not the first time a protest group sneaked a banner into Target Field. In September 2010, during the eighth inning of a game between the Twins and Texas, Rainforest Action Network dropped a banner reading “Destroys Rainforests’’ next to a Cargill advertising sign behind home plate. The banner was displayed for a few minutes until stadium officials asked that it be removed.

The slogan "Love water not oil" is associated with the Honor Earth campaign, led by activist Winona LaDuke and the Indigo Girls, a musical group.

Social media quickly filled with comments about the protest: 

 

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  • This photo taken late Tuesday night shows how close Minneapolis' B parking ramp is to the back of Target Field. Witnesses say a protester jumped from the ramp to a horizontal ladder attached to Target Field before hanging a protest banner during the All Star Game on July 15, 2014.

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