It was over 30 years ago that I accompanied my then-fiance Roy Fauth to a baseball game at the then brand-new Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome in downtown Minneapolis. The air-inflated dome was so new at that time that there was not even any air-conditioning, so I suffered through a hair-melting, breath-stopping Twins game that had nothing to do with whether the Twins were playing well or not!
Over the years since, I have attended the occasional Vikings game or Twins game in this stadium, which for many years was the pride of Minnesota. It featured indoor comfort in a state which is known for its cold winters and drizzly springs.
Until a very few years ago, it never occurred to me that this stadium, which seemed so new to me, could ever be considered out of date or in need of replacing. Then, the Twins got the brilliant idea to build an open-air stadium� so they could freeze during the springs and swelter all summer long. It might interest them to know (but it probably doesn’t) that I haven’t been to a Twins game yet in their fancy new Target Field and I haven’t missed them.
I have, however, continued to, on rare occasions, see the Vikings at the Metrodome. I admit I didn’t rush to see any games when the dome’s ceiling collapsed and they were playing at the college stadium, but I was there on the occasion of my older grandson’s first birthday when he had his first experience in the Metrodome.
However, even the Vikings have now decided to abandon the old Dome for a brand new field which will be built over a couple of years on the very site where the old stadium now stands. This is their last season in the old Dome, sad to say.
It was necessary, I decided, to visit one last time this dome where so many interesting adventures have taken place. It’s not that I’m a huge football fan, but I have been around men all my life who take their loyalty to the Vikings seriously. I learned that it’s about family, since they choose to back the Vikings as the nearest team to our home and it’s about loyalty, since sometimes the old purple and gold doesn’t give us much to be proud of, but we back them anyway because…well, because they are our Vikings.
This week, I made what is very likely my last visit to the Metrodome. I went with the same person I accompanied the first time and every time since. I was a little sentimental about the fact that this is the last time I’ll see that soft, puffy ceiling, or feel myself being blown out of the doors by the air pressure to hold it up.
The Vikings also made it memorable, losing a closely-contested match against the Cleveland Browns, who, according to my aggravated husband, “they should have been able to beat.” At least as I visited the Metrodome one last time, the Vikings reminded me of their most endearing quality: they never fail to be able to frustrate my husband, their number-one fan! Goodbye to the Metrodome—and Vikings try to rise up to the promise of your grand new home.
Bidding a fond farewell