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Wentz the subject of ESPN 'hero shoot'

FARGO -- Fargo's Broadway has been the scene of many high-profile productions in recent years and Monday morning, March 21, it was the backdrop for the Carson Wentz show.

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Bison quarterback Carson Wentz on Monday, March 21, 2016, on Broadway, Fargo. Michael Vosburg / Forum Photo Editor

FARGO -- Fargo’s Broadway has been the scene of many high-profile productions in recent years and Monday morning, March 21, it was the backdrop for the Carson Wentz show.

The successful Bison quarterback is a hot prospect in the upcoming NFL draft, but he had to be feeling the chill as he strolled Broadway in 30-degree temperatures Monday while a crew from ESPN filmed a segment for a feature that will air Thursday, April 28, the opening night of the NFL draft.

The Bison standout will be one of six top athletes who will be featured at the beginning of the draft coverage, said Lucas Nickerson, an ESPN art director who was helping coordinate the filming Monday.

“We call them hero shoots,” Nickerson said of the profiles ESPN is putting together.

In addition to the filming on Broadway, Nickerson said more footage will be shot in a number of locations around Fargo and North Dakota.

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“We just try to find creative ways to show them,” Nickerson said, referring to Wentz and other top draft hopefuls.

“This year, the idea is to shoot them in their college towns and just try to showcase them in a heroic way,” Nickerson said.

In addition to being included as part of opening coverage of the draft, the footage shot Monday will also be used in promotional spots leading up to the event, Nickerson said.

For Monday’s shoot, police closed a section of Broadway in front of the Fargo Theatre to both car and foot traffic for about three hours.

At times, people trying to get to their jobs were directed to take a circuitous route so as to avoid interfering with the filming.

A few members of the public would stop to watch the goings on; among them was 10-year-old Jack Gadberry, who brought a football in hopes Wentz would sign it. He wasn’t disappointed.

“I got my ball signed by Carson Wentz just by asking very nicely,” Gadberry said.

“He’s a really good quarterback,” Gadberry added. “I think he’ll do well in the NFL.”

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Jill Elliott, deputy director of the Fargo Housing Authority, stepped out the front door of the agency to take photos and video of the ESPN shoot.

“It’s the latest Broadway show,” Elliott said, adding that she and her co-workers enjoy being close to the many interesting things that happen downtown.

“It’s all part of the creative spirit down here,” she said.

Brian Hayer agreed.

“We don’t mind at all, it’s all part of being downtown. We love it,” said Hayer, part owner of Warner & Co. Insurance.

The agency is a neighbor to the Fargo Theatre, whose marquee has been the backdrop for past events that include ESPN’s Game Day and a video shoot of actor Josh Duhamel that was used to make promotional materials for North Dakota tourism.

On Monday morning, the marquee read: “2016 NFL Draft Carson Wentz.”

Shirley Ellingson, a resident of north Fargo, was heading out on a shopping trip when she said she had to stop and take some pictures of the action happening on Broadway.

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“We were on our way to Wal-Mart,” she said.

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Bison quarterback Carson Wentz is filmed by a drone Monday, March 21, 2016, on Broadway, Fargo. Michael Vosburg / Forum Photo Editor

Related Topics: CARSON WENTZ
I'm a reporter and a photographer and sometimes I create videos to go with my stories.

I graduated from Minnesota State University Moorhead and in my time with The Forum I have covered a number of beats, from cops and courts to business and education.

I've also written about UFOs, ghosts, dinosaur bones and the planet Pluto.

You may reach me by phone at 701-241-5555, or by email at dolson@forumcomm.com
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