Giving and Volunteering
Kyle Rudolph unveils new End Zone at University of Minnesota Masonic Children's Hospital
On Tuesday, Minnesota Vikings player Kyle Rudolph unveiled his new End Zone at University of Minnesota Masonic Children's Hospital. The End Zone is a therapeutic play space for children and teens located within the hospital.
- December 19, 2017
- By Staff Writer
For three years, Kyle and Jordan Rudolph dreamed of creating a child- and teen-friendly space for patients and families at University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital.
On Tuesday, that dream became a reality with the unveiling of Kyle Rudolph’s End Zone. Equipped with a sports simulator, a video game lounge, a community kitchen, and many other features, the new space is designed to give hospital patients and their families a place to laugh, relax and engage in healing therapies and hang out with other kids who know what it’s like to spend time in the hospital.
“I’m extremely honored to have the platform to be able to come here and make a difference—and impact these families’ lives and make them just a little bit better,” Rudolph said at the ribbon cutting ceremony.
The Rudolph family donated $250,000 to fund the 2,500-square-foot therapeutic play space, which broke ground in early 2017. In addition, the hospital received support from Aerotek, CenturyLink, Champions for Children Celebrity Golf Classic, Cub, the Hall Family, Love Your Melon, Meridian Behavioral Health, Northwestern Mutual-Minneapolis, and the Sen family.
University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital staff will also use the End Zone for events, classes and activities. For example, the Cub Kitchen in the End Zone may eventually host nutrition classes and art and crafts activities.The End Zone features include:
- An indoor basketball hoop sponsored by Northwestern Mutual
- A digital sports simulator
- The CenturyLink Connect—an area equipped with a TV and video game consoles
- The Cub Kitchen and adjacent seating area
- The Love Your Melon Lounge, which will include table games and a vending machine that dispenses LYM beanies
- The Meridian Behavioral Health Discovery Wall for patients with autism spectrum disorder or other behavioral health conditions
- The Hall Family Forest, a quiet space for families with young children
In addition to their donation to the End Zone project, the Rudolphs have supported other programs and events for hospital patients and families, and frequently visit the hospital itself. This December, the Rudolphs hosted the second annual Rudy’s Red Eye Express, a special event that transports children and families to Santa’s Workshop at the North Pole.
“We’re so glad that this space is here. The Vikings have had a longstanding relationship with Masonic Children’s Hospital,” Rudolph said. “We can’t wait to see the patients, their families, using it and being kids.”