A dispute between the Vikings and some of their earliest cheerleaders appears to have been smoothed over. A date is finally set for the Vikings to recognize and host a gameday reunion performance by the team's cheerleading group from many years ago.
St. Louis Park Parkettes from around the state and the country will arrive in the Twin Cities next week and run through a couple rehearsals to kick out a 3-minute routine before the Aug. 31 preseason game at U.S. Bank Stadium, said Janet Luby, a onetime Parkette who's helping with logistics.
The rift between team officials and alums of the Parkettes, who served as Vikings cheerleaders from 1964 to 1983, surfaced last summer when the Vikings invited former cheerleaders to cheer at the team's first game in its new stadium, a preseason contest on Aug. 28, 2016. The invite went out to roughly 500 alums from 1984 — when the team established the Minnesota Vikings Cheerleaders group — to 2015.
The Parkettes, who were high school students when they cheered, were not invited, nor were they allowed to register.
An agreement was reached allowing the Parkettes to put on a show Nov. 20 before a regular season game, but the short notice made it difficult for many of the former cheerleaders to make that date, Luby said Monday.
"We're all part of the group now," Luby said of herself and her fellow Parkettes.
Luby said she expects more than 200 former Parkettes to participate in next week's gameday routine, choreographed in the group's signature Rockette style of high kicks.
Vikings spokesman Jeff Anderson said Monday the team also is putting together a display inside the stadium representing the various Vikings cheerleader groups over the years. He said the exhibit should be in place before the Aug. 31 game.