Northern State opens Dacotah Bank Stadium with 5,867fans and a win


It started in November 2017.

Earlier, actually. There were whispers about an on-campus football stadium for Northern State University even before then. But where would it fit? And how would it be paid for?

The base answer came at Northern Night in November 2017. That’s when the university announced, during its annual fundraiser, its Educational Impact Campaign, a $45 million drive to pay for, among other things, a regional sports complex that included Dacotah Bank Stadium.

Ultimately, the capital campaign raised more than $60 million, which has also helped pay for a new South Dakota School for the Blind and Visually Impaired, soccer field, football practice field and Koehler Hall of Fame Softball Field.

More:$45M drive includes Dacotah Bank Stadium

A National Guard Blackhawk helicopter did a flyover above the capacity crowd at the Dacotah Bank stadium Saturday night.

But Saturday night was all about football.

That’s when Dacotah Bank Stadium opened near the intersection of South State Street and 15th Avenue Southeast, the site of the old, dated school for the blind that was razed to make way for the sports complex.

South Dakota Board of Regents member Jim Thares of Aberdeen asked the capacity crowd what it thought of the stadium he said was 100 years in the making. The 5,867 fans in attendance roared in response.

Tailgating outside the new facility started at 3 p.m.

The gates opened at 5 p.m., an hour and change in advance of kickoff. Before the game began, there was an appropriate buildup.

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