- Pontiac Silverdome
stadium_name = Pontiac Silverdome
nickname = The Silverdome, The Dome
location = 1200 Featherstone Road
broke_ground = September 19, 1973
opened = August 23, 1975
closed = As of August 2008
owner = The City of Pontiac
operator = Pontiac Stadium Building Authority
construction_cost = $55.7 million
former_names = Pontiac Metropolitan Stadium (1975)
Detroit Lions(NFL) (1975–2001) Detroit Pistons(NBA) (1978–1988) Michigan Panthers(USFL) (1983–1984) Detroit Express(NASL) (1978–1980) Cherry Bowl(NCAA) (1984–1985) Motor City Bowl(NCAA) (1997–2001)
seating_capacity = 80,311
93,173 (largest crowd, from
WrestleMania III)cite web|url= http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0FCO/is_3_5/ai_108049489/pg_2|title=Interview: Randy Savage|last=Yandek|first=Chris| publisher=Wrestling Digest|accessdate=2007-10-14|month=October | year=2003] cite web|url= http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0FCO/is_4_4/ai_94123536|title=The main events: ladies and gentlemen, may we present the 25 most memorable matches in the last 25 years|last=Eck|first=Kevin|publisher=Wrestling Digest|accessdate=2007-10-14|month=December | year=2002] cite book|title=Main Event: WWE in the Raging 80s|first=Brian|last=Shields|publisher= Simon and Schuster|pages=pp. 26|year=2006|isbn=1416532579] cite book|title=The Rise & Fall of ECW: Extreme Championship Wrestling|last=Loverro|first=Thom|publisher=Simon and Schuster|year=2006|isbn=1416510583]
The Pontiac Silverdome is a
domed stadiumin Pontiac, Michigan, a satellite cityof Detroit. It hosted the Detroit Lionsof the NFL from 1975–2001, the Detroit Pistonsof the NBA from 1978–1988, the Michigan Panthersof the USFL from 1983–1984, the college football Cherry Bowlin 1984 and 1985 and Motor City Bowlfrom 1997 until 2001, the MHSAA football state finals from 1976–2004, and four first-round games during the 1994 World Cup.
For the World Cup games, a natural grass surface capable of growing inside the dome was developed and installed by a team from
Michigan State University. [http://www.athleticturf.net/athleticturf/article/articleDetail.jsp?id=308153] This grass surface was laid upon wooden pallets atop the artificial turf that is usually used. It was the first time that World Cup games were played indoors.
The Silverdome also hosted the 1979
NBA All-Star Game, Super Bowl XVIon January 28, 1982, and the 1988 and 1991 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball TournamentMidwest Regionals. In 1987, Pope John Paul IIcelebrated mass there. Elvis Presleyalso performed a concert there in 1975, and had vowed to play there every other year. Unfortunately, the 1977 show never happened due to his untimely death. On March 29, 1987, the World Wrestling Federation's WrestleMania IIIestablished the largest indoor attendance record for a sporting event, with a crowd of 93,173 in attendance.cite web|url= http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0FCO/is_3_5/ai_108049489/pg_2|title=Interview: Randy Savage|last=Yandek|first=Chris| publisher=Wrestling Digest|accessdate=2007-10-14|month=October | year=2003] cite web|url= http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0FCO/is_4_4/ai_94123536|title=The main events: ladies and gentlemen, may we present the 25 most memorable matches in the last 25 years|last=Eck|first=Kevin|publisher=Wrestling Digest|accessdate=2007-10-14|month=December | year=2002] cite book|title=Main Event: WWE in the Raging 80s|first=Brian|last=Shields|publisher= Simon and Schuster|pages=pp. 26|year=2006|isbn=1416532579] cite book|title=The Rise & Fall of ECW: Extreme Championship Wrestling|last=Loverro|first=Thom|publisher=Simon and Schuster|year=2006|isbn=1416510583]
On July 15, 1994, English rock band
Pink Floydperformed their classic album The Dark Side of the Moonin its entirety for the first time since 1975. They played two shows on what turned out to be the band's final North American tour in 1994 in support of their album The Division Bell.
The decision to build a domed stadium in Pontiac took place after a late-season football game at Tiger Stadium resulted in a half-dozen pairs of shoes being lost beneath the muddy surface and not recovered until the next spring. Completed in 1975 (as the Pontiac Metropolitan Stadium, or PonMet Stadium for short) at a cost of $55.7 million, the Silverdome seated 80,311. It contained 102 luxury suites and 7,384 club seats.
Original silver roof
The original silver roof was built of Teflon-coated fiberglass panels, and supported by air pressure inside the stadium (anyone who has attended an event at the Silverdome is familiar with the ear-popping "wind tunnel" effect at the entrances). The roof was replaced by a new canvas fabric reinforced by steel girders after a freak spring snowstorm on March 4, 1985 caused structural damage to the old roof. Because of the damage, the Detroit Pistons played the remainder of the 1984–85 season at
Cobo Arena. The Pistons won the last game they ever played in the Silverdome, which was Game 5 of the 1988 NBA Finals, where they took a 3–2 lead over the Los Angeles Lakersbefore losing in seven games.
Being one of the largest stadiums in the NFL and also a domed stadium, the Silverdome was known for the extremely loud noise that the fans were capable of producing when the stands were filled.
Notable audience attendance numbers
The largest crowd to ever gather at the Silverdome for an event was 93,682 for a visit and Mass by
Pope John Paul IIin 1987. The second largest crowd was on March 29, 1987 for WrestleMania III, with a reported attendance of 93,173. Another notable audience attendance record had earlier been broken on April 30, 1977, when English rock band Led Zeppelinplayed in front of 76,229 fans at the Silverdome. This was at the time a new world record attendance for a solo indoor attraction, beating the 75,962 that The Whoattracted there in December 1975.
Marching band activities and events
The Silverdome was also the home to many marching band activities and events, including the
Michigan Competing Band AssociationState Marching Band Championships until 2005, the Bands of AmericaRegional championships from 2003 to 2005, and the Bands of America Grand National Championships in 1987 and 1988.
Usage after Lions' move to Ford Field
The Lions moved to
Ford Fieldat the beginning of the 2002 NFL season. When the World Hockey Association(WHA) tried to re-introduce itself, the new WHA Detroit team was slated to play their home games at the Silverdome. Plans were also mooted for a Windsor-based Canadian Football Leagueteam which could have used the dome for possible playoff games, but that team also did not materialize.
After the Lions relocated, activity in the Silverdome dropped drastically. However some usage was still present. Annually,
Jehovah's Witnessesused the Silverdome from the late 1970s to 2004. Due to talk of renovation in 2004, the Witnesses opted to travel to The Dow Event Centerin Saginaw, and the SeaGate Convention Centrein Toledo, Ohiofor their District Conventions. [http://www.jw-media.org/region/americas/usa/english/releases/events/usa_e040302.htm]
The Silverdome was the brief home to the Drive-in movies. Opening in 2003 with two screens, a third screen was later added. The Silverdome Drive In ran in the summers of 2003–2005. The Drive In opened for a short stint in 2006, but as of 2008 it is closed.
The Silverdome was used for
Monster Jamon January 7, 2006. It was also used as a practice facility for the AFC Champions Pittsburgh Steelersfor Super Bowl XL, with the NFL adding FieldTurf, which was later donated to a local high school. There was also a celebrity flag footballgame that Saturday which served as the last football event ever at the Silverdome. The Monster Truck BIGFOOT made its first public exibit of car crushing ever at the Dome.
Many attempts to sell the Silverdome have failed, however it was reported on July 10, 2008 that the Pontiac City Council had voted 4–2 to approve the $20 million sale of the arena to help solve the city's financial issues. [ [http://www.detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080208/METRO/802080398 Second attempt to deal Silverdome falls through ] ] [ [http://www.detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080711/METRO/807110403 Council approves sale of Silverdome ] ]
Sports in metropolitan Detroit
Tourism in metropolitan Detroit
title = Home of
years = 1975–2001
before = Tiger Stadium
Ford Fieldsuccession box
title = Host of the
NBA All-Star Game
years = 1979
Capital Centresuccession box
title = Host of
Super Bowl XVI
years = 1982
after = Rose Bowlsuccession box
title = Home of the
years = 1978–1988
before = Cobo Arena
The Palace of Auburn Hillssuccession box
title = Host of
Bands of America
Grand National Championship
years = 1987–1988
before = Hoosier Dome
RCA Domesuccession box
title = Host of
Motor City Bowl
years = 1997–2001
before = first Stadium
Ford Fieldsuccession box
title = Host of
years = 1987
before = Nassau Coliseum
L.A. Sports Arena
after = Trump Plaza
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