The Craigslist ad for a purple motorcycle read: “Minnesota Vikings (Ragnar’s) Used in Metro Dome.”

Was the former Vikings mascot really selling his colorful Harley Davidson? Was it a hoax?

A few internet commenters, including some on Reddit, thought so.

Turns out the ad was the real deal — but it wasn’t Ragnar selling the themed bike.

The Star Tribune spoke with the bike’s owner, Tim Moe, who confirmed his Craigslist ad was authentic and the bike has been sold.

Moe, of Burnsville, said he bought the Harley, the first bike Ragnar rode in the Metrodome, about 18 years ago at an auction benefiting the Vikings Children’s Fund. Moe said Ragnar delivered the bike himself.

“You could tell he was a little sad to be getting rid of it, just like I’m a little sad today,” Moe said. “I don’t paint my face or anything, but I’m a big-time Vikings fan.”

The for-sale ad on the classifieds website listed the 1978 Harley Davidson “Shovelhead 1200” for $7,495. That’s less than half of what Ragnar wanted per game to continue his role with the Vikings. Joe Juranitch, the man who played Ragnar at home games for more than two decades, didn’t respond to requests for comment.

His relationship with the Vikings ended last year after the two parties couldn’t agree on the terms of Ragnar’s contract.

Moe said he’s tried to sell the bike a few times over the years with little interest. “I tried to sell it last September and I got a couple nibbles but everyone wanted to trade me for something like an old Coke or Pepsi machine,” he said.

Originally, Vikings fans on Reddit raised red flags because they hadn’t seen Ragnar lead the cheerleaders and the team onto the field on anything other than a 2003 Suzuki Intruder Volusia 800. But according to Ragnar’s website, www.ragnartheviking.com, a 1978 Harley was the first bike he used and there’s a photo showing him riding it at the Metrodome.

It’s hard to get a good look at the bike being sold in the Craigslist ad, because the seller’s finger got in the way. From Reddit: “First point, I’m not buying a motorcycle that has that cheesehead wearing traitor’s name on it. Second point, seller [should] learn how to take a picture without your finger in it.”

So who’s the lucky buyer?

“I sold it to someone local from Jerry’s Floors in Spring Lake Park,” Moe said. “He picked it up this afternoon and he said he’s going to put it in his lobby.”

As for Ragnar?

“I wish he were still around. If the Vikings were smart, they’d work something out with him,” Moe said. “He’s just a guy trying to make a living, too, you know.”

 

@aimeeblanchette