Santorum’s Pinstripe Bowl watch party doubles as Ames campaign stop

Rick Santorum, former republican congressman from Pennsylvania, is met with questions from the press as he walks into Buffalo Wild Wings in Ames on Friday, Dec. 30. Santorum’s stop, which consisted of a Pinstripe Bowl game-watching party, was one of four campaign stops around Iowa on Friday, leading up to the 2012 Iowa caucuses, which will take place on Jan. 3rd. 

Nicole Wiegand

Rick Santorum, former republican congressman from Pennsylvania, stopped at Buffalo Wild Wings in Ames Friday afternoon, Dec. 30, to host a New Era Pinstripe Bowl game watch party.

The restaurant was already full of Cyclone fans donning cardinal and gold and feasting on buffalo wings prior to the 2:20 p.m. kickoff.

Members of local and national media packed into the dining room before Santorum’s 3 p.m. arrival. 

Sporting an ISU sweater vest, Santorum was ambushed by reporters and photographers immediately upon entering the restaurant. The large crowd initially blocked the view of many of the restaurant’s flatscreen TVs, drawing annoyed comments from fans trying to watch the game.

With four tables in the corner of the dining room reserved for his campaign team, Santorum took questions from voters as well as reporters before sitting down to dine and watch the second half of the game.

Santorum’s stop in Ames was the second of four events his campaign team had planned across central Iowa Friday, including a second party at Okiboji Grill in Johnston Friday night to watch Iowa take on Oklahoma in the Insight Bowl.