#17: Amelia Rayno On Facing Unfortunate Choices, Sports Journalism, & Bigfoot
“As a reporter, you never want to be a part of the story.”
Amelia Rayno (@AmeliaRayno) is a food, travel, and features reporter for the Star Tribune. Prior to her current role she covered the University of Minnesota Athletic Department, mainly the Gophers’ men’s basketball team, for six years.
In August of 2015, Amelia penned a very personal article detailing the sexual harassment she endured at the hands of former Gopher Athletic Director Norwood Teague, all-the-while having to report on the athletic department for her job. Amelia talks about the difficult decision to go public with her story and opens up about the realities for females who work in a male-dominant environment, like sports.
Despite her horrid encounters with Norwood Teague, Amelia has fond memories of her time on the Gophers beat. She talks about the great stories that surround college basketball, the opportunity to develop as a sports journalist, and what it was like to cover legendary head coach Tubby Smith. Amelia also paints a hilarious picture of what she acts like on press row when trying to finish a game story on deadline. (Hint: don't text her!)
Today, Amelia writes about two passions aside from sports: food and travel. You will spot her byline on many of the latest happenings on the Twin Cities’ burgeoning food and booze scene. For her travel stories, I recommend checking out Amelia’s blog called (Traveling) Out of Bounds, where she details her adventures, the good, bad, and the ugly.
Oh, and bigfoot! She is on a mission to uncover the big, hairy truth about bigfoot, perhaps with her pale Bobo from the Animal Planet’s TV show Finding Bigfoot. We kick off the interview with this topic.
p.s. I'd like to give a shoutout to Common Roots Cafe in Minneapolis for hosting this interview.
Some topics mentioned and discussed:
Her obsessive journaling as a kid
A recent trip to Cuba and stepping back in time
Sid Hartman and his chocolate ice cream
Covering the Final Four
Being "in over her skis" during the first year covering college hoops
Sports writers and their relationship with deadlines
Live-tweeting and fans' expectations
The ability to say "yes" to a dream
Amelia's favorites related to the twin cities:
- Hola Arepa - Arepa and the cocktail special
Favorite Public Space
- Dog Park at Minnehaha (does she even have a dog?)
Favorite Annual Event:
Most Fascinating Person You Know
State of the Union Message
- "Put your phones down and have real experiences. Be in the moment."