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  • I Will Always Miss The Metrodome


    Dave Overlund

    Target Field is an awesome venue with perfect sightlines, a great location and wonderful amenities. With that being said, I still miss the Metrodome.

    Image courtesy of Seth Stohs, Twins Daily

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    I would imagine most of my love for the Dome is simply based in nostalgia. After all, it opened the year I was born and hosted many of my favorite team’s best moments throughout my childhood and beyond.

    But there are many other things I miss about the place. For starters, the ticket prices were so perfectly cheap, both through the box office and the ‘brokers’ outside the stadium. One year in the late 2000’s, I was able to buy a full season ticket for upper general admission for $99! With a seat to sit in and everything!

    There were relatively few price points to deal with and the most expensive lower level tickets were right around $50. Have you seen what it costs to sit in the Legend’s Club at Target Field?!

    It’s super nice to sit outside on a May night at Target Field to check out a game. It can be a bit miserable in April in the cold, July in the sweltering heat or September when it goes back to cold. At the Dome? Every game was 70 degrees, the perfect weather night in and night out.

    No phantom rain delays or rainouts. No checking the weather for two weeks leading up to the game to see if the drive from outstate would even be worth it. Plus, I am a hoodie and jeans guy pretty much every day, so the Dome’s climate suited me perfectly. 

    Another thing missing at Target Field is the 50/50 chance you’d skin both of your knees when the heavily-pressured air of the Dome’s roof was pushed through the doors of Gate F as you left the building late at night. If you went through the revolving doors you were doing it wrong. 

    For me, the biggest thing I miss about the Dome was the focus on the game itself, as opposed to all the bells and whistles that come with the “Target Field Experience.” If the Twins didn’t put a winning team on the field, people wouldn’t show up. Now, the Twins are ‘your ticket to summer,’ just another overpriced bar in downtown Minneapolis.

    People didn’t show up at the Dome to take selfies and check in on social media, they went to actually watch the baseball game and interact with the things going on down on the field.

    The home field advantage at the Dome was unparalleled, with 50,000+ baseball fans bellowing in an echo chamber for three hours. Try as it may, Target Field will never, ever provide the same advantage.

    I didn’t love everything about the Metrodome. Standing shoulder-to-shoulder at a trough was never my thing, the air felt really stale most of the time, and I definitely would have preferred to be outside on one of those all-too-rare perfect Minnesota nights.

    I will always have a place in my heart for my beloved Metrodome. May she rest in peace.  

    Please share some of your favorite Metrodome Memories. 

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    All those things you said about the Metrodome are absolutely true.  I miss her too.

    For those of us that just like to simply go and watch baseball, the Metrodome advantages you mentioned are significant.  

    You could afford to go to more games, you'd be more comfortable inside (temps), you'd never had to be screwed over with a rain out or maybe even worse yet, have to endure a long rain delay.  It was easier to get a foul ball souvenir.  And back then, people actually watched the game instead of their stupid phones. 

    It was also a place our team could actually win a playoff game.

      

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    As a general rule, I hated the Dome.  Too many nice days/nights spent indoors.  That said, I do have some fond memories there.  Kubel capping his cycle with a grand slam, completing a comeback for the team after getting down early; Prince Fielder's inside-the-park HR; and the final series there.  

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    I went to the 1st game ever played there, an exhibition game on April 3rd, 1982. Pete Rose got the 1st hit in The Dome. Wanted to get Pete's autograph but it didn't happen. It felt both weird and kinda cool playing indoors; a Guthrie Theatre for baseball. From the 2nd deck the Blue-Green effect of the field and surrounding walls and stands could play visual tricks on you. And getting "swept" out of the park after the game by the air pressure was unique. Now, where did I park my car again?

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    Welcome aboard @Dave Overlund! As far as the venue was concerned, it was a dump. You could smell that stale air trapped in the building since 1982, the trough in the restroom was a mess, not to mention the stadium was configured better for football than baseball. 

    With all that being said, the Twins had a definite home field advantage in that place. We were more aware of the weird bounces a ball would take off the Astro turf. Our players didn’t lose the ball in the white Teflon roof as much as opposing players. 

    Target Field is a massive upgrade for the Twins, and so is US Bank Stadium for the Vikings. If there’s anything I miss from the dome days, it’s Hormel Hotdog night! 

     

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    Worked as a beer vendor from the first exhibition game - still have my id - until work moved me out of state a number of years later. The place was a dump but there were memorable moments, maybe none better than Game 163 on a night where rain turned to sleet, outside, while we watched in warmth inside. Target Field is great and I prefer outdoor baseball.

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    The only time I set foot in the Metrodome was when I went with my mom to play extras in the movie Little Big League. My family wasn't really into sports. Would love to go back in time and experience a game there. Target Field is where it all started for me, though, so I'll always love Target Field.

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    5 hours ago, wsnydes said:

    As a general rule, I hated the Dome.  Too many nice days/nights spent indoors.

    For whatever reason, I never minded night games in the Dome. The only bummer was day games, when you'd see the sunlight making the white roof very bright. Although that was balanced a bit by a few rainy days spent inside the Dome too! Or even snowy days, especially for TwinsFest and Gophers baseball.

    Edit to add: also, I enjoyed the day games on very HOT days. Actually went to a few games at the Dome just for the air conditioning!

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    4 hours ago, prouster said:

    I miss the $3 student nights. There was nothing better than setting down the text books, taking the bus from the U to the Dome on a Wednesday night, and enjoying the cheap ticket and dollar hot dogs. And maybe one or two . . . cokes.

    Not sure when exactly it started, but my first "student nights" at the Dome were $5 for lower deck LF, which was still $10 general admission. That section became reserved seating around 2004, I believe, with student tickets moving to the outfield upper deck, although with a price cut to $3 (half the normal price of $6).

     

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    It was a dump, but I have so many memories of going to games there that I can’t look at it any other way than fondly. All those days in high school and college when we sat in the cheap seats and had a great time.

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    1 hour ago, Yoke said:

    It was a dump, but I have so many memories of going to games there that I can’t look at it any other way than fondly. All those days in high school and college when we sat in the cheap seats and had a great time.

    But it was our Hump Dump!

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    Growing up in SD, it was always reassuring knowing we were going to be able to watch a game when The Dome was around, no rain outs.   For TwinsFest, I loved the way so many dealers were spread out on the floor of The Dome.   Great memories, that being said, I love Target Field as well.

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    As an "older" fan who grew up (mid to late 1970s)making road trips with my dad and brothers from northeast Iowa to Metropolitan Stadium, I welcomed the opening of the Dome in 1982, which was my senior year in high school.  My favorite memories of the Dome were making road trips with a group of high school buddies from the Lakes area in northwest Iowa.  The trip that sticks out---I can't remember who the Twins were playing, was one in the mid 80s when our group of 15 got separated after the game after imbibing a plethora of Schmidt "cold frosties" throughout the game.  Anyway, I found my way back to our van after navigating the backroads/parking lots from the gates that entered that led to the seats in lower leftfield.  The problem was, I was the first and only one that made it back to the van. After 20+ minutes the rest of our group  minus 1 (JB) made it back.  Being the "nice clean-cut" college boys we were, we weren't going to abandon our "buddy" and waited for him to arrive.  We waited and then waited some more---all the time soaking up some more adult beverages from the keg we had stowed away.  After an hour of waiting---we saddled up on a "rescue mission" to find JB.  We thought it would be easy.  Not true.  The more we drove circling around the Dome----the more frequent the cat calls from the back of the van to "leave that idiot" so we could find a hotel to stay in.  More to the story, but I'd have to venture into territory that would lead to a "R/N-17 rating" so I will end it here.  I can state we never located JB.  He ended up paying for a bus ticket to take him back to our hometown.  We got up the following morning, navigating southward and enjoyed a great breakfast at the Happy Chef in Mankato.  Sometime that morning as the fog of our memories started to clear-----we did wonder what happened to JB.  Oh the fun of being a college kid in the 80s.

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    46 minutes ago, darwin22 said:

    -----we did wonder what happened to JB.  Oh the fun of being a college kid in the 80s.

    So did you ever locate JB or is this now a cold case file on Investigation Discovery?

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    I have plenty of fond memories of the Metrodome - those will never change.

    But do I miss watching the Twins play indoors in the worst stadium in professional sports on a beautiful 75 degree spring day? Never. The stadium was gimmicky and was outdated 15 years after it was built. Good riddance to the dum-dome. Target Field is light years better.

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    Most enjoyable Christmas gift I've gotten in a long time is this T-shirt. (I'm the one on the right.)

    It was especially cool to have Provus track me down on social media and ask for a copy of the picture. And, when asking a question during one of the sessions at TwinsFest, to have LaTroy Hawkins say, "I miss the Metrodome too." 

    I'll go with what's been said -- 8-0 in the World Series, cheap ($29 for four tickets, four sodas, four hot dogs and a program, if I recall), the pressure rush at the doors, and the knowledge that there would be a game when I drove 300-500 miles.

    Provus.jpg

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    My memories of the Metrodome have a few different phases:

    1. As a kid, the place seemed like magic. Baseball games with dad / uncle / occasional school group because the knothole prices were cheap. At that age when major league baseball was special, the Metrodome was special.  I even remember watching the Timberwolves play their first NBA games in the Metrodome, though upper deck seating for those games wasn't great.  I think Michael Jordan was playing in one of those games, but you couldn't really see anyone's jersey or have any idea who was going in and out on that basketball court way down there....

    2. As I got older, so did the Dome.  After the '87 and '91 teams when Minnesota baseball went into a  decade long slump everything just felt worn out and tired about the experience in the Dome. The lackluster baseball probably had a lot to do with it, and by the time the late 90s rolled around "fun" was in St. Paul; the Dome felt empty and kind of sad in comparison.

    3. The Dome also had the memories of trips to see Iowa @ Minnesota football games, when the Dome was a giant roadtrip for Iowa football fans.  Of course, said roadtrip also meant the Metrodome became a code word for joking about idiots realizing that you can't take the goalposts out of an indoor stadium, or drunken bathroom trysts. (I've been in those bathrooms - yuck city.)

    4. The stadium fights. The Metrodome became a symbol of all the things that didn't work by trying to keep the Vikings happy, the Gophers happy, the Twins happy... and no one was happy.

    All in all, I have a certain nostalgia for things that happened there - but I don't really have a nostalgia for the place itself.

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    On 10/29/2021 at 5:06 AM, Doctor Gast said:

    Welcome Dave. I miss the Metrodome too. Time spent with family and doing the "wave". The Metrodome was our X factor. We won most of our home post season games. The '87 & '91 WS we won all our home games and lost (I believe) all our away games.

    We didn't lose all of the away games prior to World Series action because we had home field disadvantages against Detroit and Toronto (I think). I do remember we clinched the ALCS at Detroit with a come-backer to Blyleven as the final out, but it's true during WS action that we won every home game and lost every road game.

    I too have fond memories of the Dome. "Off the baggie!" And as other's have mentioned, you could watch a game without having to take out a loan. The Dome provided me and my pals with many fond memories.

    I think that Kong once hit a ball that never came down, didn't he? Does anyone remember that?

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    My memories of the Dome were quite positive especially since we came from NE North Dakota we knew there was going to be baseball game and we would be sitting in comfort to watch a game. I had been to metropolitan stadium before in early April never was so cold as that sitting bleachers but like Target field in June and early July no better than watching a game outdoors. The problem with outdoor stadium in Minnesota the beautiful days are so limited and poor weather days has such impact on our teams playing performance and keeping players healthy on the field. I think over the years how player performance was hurt by early season muscle pulls and tendon strains playing in cold weather especially early in the season. I also think its one the reasons we had such hard time to signing free agent talent and keeping players is because of playing in cold outside temperatures.  Also the comments that for lot people attending its like going to theme bar there not there for the baseball its the drinking and the food but i am there for  the baseball and all thing you can't see on television. I do miss the dome having that home field advantage we had with the players that were suited to playing in the dome now were like rest of teams only where we struggle each finding enough good players to play on traditional fields.

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    21 hours ago, Sousy said:

    3. The Dome also had the memories of trips to see Iowa @ Minnesota football games, when the Dome was a giant roadtrip for Iowa football fans.  Of course, said roadtrip also meant the Metrodome became a code word for joking about idiots realizing that you can't take the goalposts out of an indoor stadium, or drunken bathroom trysts. (I've been in those bathrooms - yuck city.)

    For a while in college, I worked at TCF Bank stadium on the operations crew. It was the inaugural year of the stadium, so it was pretty cool to have access to all the luxury areas and secret spots. We may or may not have raided the freezers in the DQ Club once or twice during the night cleaning shifts . . . Anyway, the Iowa bathroom thing was only about a year old at the time, so everyone remembered it. If we walked in on something like that at the Bank, we were supposed to radio the supervisor with a “code Iowa.” It never happened when I worked there—not among the fans, at least. 

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    4 hours ago, prouster said:

    If we walked in on something like that at the Bank, we were supposed to radio the supervisor with a “code Iowa.”

    The whole situation is funny in a way because it certainly led to the most awkward five hour drive in history.

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    Have to add another Metrodome story.  100% true story, although those that I've told it to believe its embellished. I swear to you, its absolutely true.  Setting summer 1994 when the Twins had another lackluster season going.  Out of high school and made a summer road trip with my new spouse to see the Twins at the Dome for a weekend series against the White Sox.  Attended Friday night with one of my high school buddies that was working in some capacity (I forget) for the Guthrie Theater.  Twins won the game, but nothing eventful happened that night.  Saturday was the "experience" I'll never forget.  With it being a night game, my spouse, myself and my high school buddy(BW) had tickets for Game 2.  Spent the afternoon at my friends house in south Minneapolis taking it easy.  Well, at least my wife and I did.  Can't say the same for BW and his theater buddy, Chip.  They started imbibing on a local St. Paul beer, which I remember as "Pigs Eye."  I drank one or two, but didn't like the taste.  However, BW and Chip drank at least a case and a half of this beverage over the course of the afternoon.  Needless to say, by the time we settled into our field level seats down the 1B line, both BW and Chip were feeling quite good.  Being a Saturday night against the rival Sox, there was a good crowd---I'm guessing around 25K at the Dome.  In our seating area it was quite crowded as the game began.  That didn't last long.  No later than the bottom of the 1st I noticed (as did my wife) the most awful smell eminating from BW and Chip. Yes, the dreaded Pigs Eye began to make its presence known---if you get my drift.  This was not just a foul smell.  It was the most disgusting odor you can ever imagine.  My wife was beyond embarrassed.  She moved to an open area as she couldn't stand the odors any longer.  She was not the only person who "noticed" this.  By the 4th inning-----a 30 foot circumference of seats near BW and Chip had been cleared out.  Those sitting in the vicinity of "the Pigs Eye bombers" began to complain to the ushers in the area.  That didn't stop the problem.  Around the 5th inning------I noticed a Metrodome usher, who couldn't have been more than 20--a kid---ask BW and Chip to come with him-------as surrounding fans started cheering for the usher to remove my "friends".  Seeing this, I followed in pursuit to try to keep BW from getting kicked out of the dome.  As we reached the concourse area, I heard the usher politely attempt to explain that their behavior would not continue to be tolerated as their incessant passage of wind was making it impossible for fans to breathe.  My HS buddy, BW, of course, in his inebriated condition, had little use for the ushers plea. Instead, he launched into a verbal disertation that "his rights" were being violated and that he had "the constitutional right( I don't remember that from the Bill of Rights) to pass gas."  Yes, he actually used those words!  Anyway, I got both back to their seats after promising the usher I would look after them and get them relocated if problems persisted.  As you might imagine there were A LOT of displeased fans when I returned with BW and Chip.  We left around the 8th inning---much to the delight of fans in the area.  Of course, by the following morning-----neither of these guys had ANY recollection of their antics.  True story.

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    On 10/29/2021 at 9:54 AM, AceWrigley said:

    So did you ever locate JB or is this now a cold case file on Investigation Discovery?

    From the reports I got------JB somehow had a relative living in the Twin Cities and ended up, I guess contacting them--from wherever he was "MIA" that night and took a bus back to our hometown of Spencer, IA the following day.  Still no idea where he ended up after the game.  U'd think he would've "camped out" in a visible area around the Dome as we circled around for at least 1 hour looking for him.  

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    As unimaginable as it might seem after this train wreck of a season, some day the Twins might go deep in the playoffs again.

    Lately, people have been remembering the Halloween blizzard of 1991, which happened right after the series.

    Now imagine combining the two. The nation tuning into the world series in blizzard conditions at Target Field.

    The dome offered some advantages, especially after all those years of the country mocking the old Met. Especially Rams fans.

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