Howard Bazinet was on his way out to dinner in Shakopee with his fiancée Wednesday night when he noticed something odd: a guy on skis getting pulled through the intersection by an SUV with a rope.
Bazinet took a photo of the unusual winter moment during the peak of this week’s snowstorm, and it has since gone viral on Facebook. At least 2,000 people shared the photo, and it has been reposted on various crime and community Facebook groups.
“I grew up in south Minneapolis and we used to hitch on buses and cars; this took it to a new level,” Bazinet told the Star Tribune.
The Shakopee Police Department was less amused. “We didn’t think we’d have to post something like this, but here we are,” the department posted on its Facebook page.
The post placed a red circle with a line through it over the car-skier photo, contrasted with a green checkmark over a generic photo of skiers on a mountain.
Bazinet said he noticed the skier while stopped at the intersection of Mystic Lake Drive and Dean Lakes Boulevard. Before he crossed, Bazinet said the skier looked back and gave a thumbs up to his fiancée.
“Then the light turned green and off they went,” Bazinet said. “He did wear a helmet.”
He continued to watch the skier slalom down Dean Lakes Boulevard as Bazinet drove over the entrance ramp to Highway 169. He tried to get video but said it was too dark.
Shakopee police did not return calls about the incident, but did reply to one comment to say that the driver was not cited.
The Scott County Sheriff’s Office reposted the Shakopee police post, simply saying, “Don’t be like Shakopee.”
A few commenters wrote that it’s “acceptable blizzard behavior,” but it’s almost definitely illegal. According to state law, it is prohibited to hitch a “toboggan, hand sled, bicycle, or other similar device onto any motor vehicle or streetcar while being used on a highway.”