Many North Dakotans are fans of the Minnesota Twins baseball team. Well, here's a North Dakota native who not only is one of those fans, but she also helps you enjoy the games on TV.
She's Marney Gellner, a Fox Sports North sideline reporter.
Marney is one of those who gives pre-game and post-game reports, visits with the players along the sidelines, gives inside stories about the game and goes into the stands to talk to the fans between innings.
She and her family live in Carver, about a 30-minute drive from Minneapolis. But Marney says, "I am a North Dakotan through and through."
After Neighbors heard Marney mention during a broadcast that she was from North Dakota, it wrote to her for more information about herself. She kindly and quickly responded.
She was born in Langdon, N.D., in 1973 to Duane and Lola Gellner. When she was 6, the Gellners moved to Minot, N.D., where Marney graduated from Bishop Ryan High School, where she played four sports. She then attended the University of Mary in Bismarck, majoring in communications. And yes, she was involved in sports in college, also; she played volleyball for four years and softball for two.
Her first job in TV was at KXMB, Bismarck, where she worked for 1½ years in 1996-1997. She then worked at WDAZ, Grand Forks, from 1997 to 1999, and WISC in Madison, Wisconsin, from 1999 to 2002. She was a sports reporter and weekend sports anchor at all three stations.
In 2002, she joined Fox Sports North, Minneapolis, for which she is a sideline reporter for the Minnesota Timberwolves men's basketball team, the Minnesota Wild hockey team and the University of Minnesota hockey team as well as the Twins, and she also does play-by-play for the Minnesota Lynx women's basketball team.
Marney's husband, Matt Mathiasen, is from St. Cloud, Minn. He attended the University of North Dakota from 1994 to 1998, graduating with an accounting degree. He and Marney met through mutual friends who attended UND. Matt has been the ice arena manager at Dakotah Ice Center in Prior Lake, Minn. for the past 15-plus years.
He and Marney have a son, Grady, 9, and a daughter, Finley, 7.
Marney's parents live in Fargo after moving from Minot in 2006. Marney's older brother, Rob, and his family live in Grafton, N.D., where he works for Marvin Windows, and her younger brother, Ryan, and his family live in West Fargo. Ryan works for the North Dakota Association of Counties and has done North Dakota State University Bison football games on both radio and TV.
A 'people person'
Neighbors asked Marney what she most enjoyed about her job.
"I'm a people person," she replied, "so I really love being able to work with and meet a lot of different people every day."
Any especially memorable moments from her job? "Too many to count," she says.
"Growing up in North Dakota helped shape me into the person I am today," Marney says. "I'm extremely proud of my roots and would not change the way I grew up for anything.
"My closest friends are from North Dakota, my family is from North Dakota, and that beautiful state will forever be an important part of who I am."
At this point Marney had to sign off on her email, as she was working a Twins double-header. Besides that, she'd be working a Lynx game that evening.
So this woman from North Dakota went back to giving an inside peek at those Twins from Minnesota.
If you have an item of interest for this column, mail it to Neighbors, The Forum, Box 2020, Fargo, ND 58107, fax it to 241-5487 or email email@example.com.