After years of waiting and preparation, the Maple Grove Sports Dome is officially open.
The multipurpose artificial turf field and dome facility opened behind at the beginning of November.
In the spirit of partnership that the dome was built, representatives from the city of Maple Grove, Osseo School District, MapleBrook Soccer, Osseo Maple Grove Athletic Association and Hennepin County spoke at the opening celebration Saturday, Nov. 19.
“It’s a great addition to our community,” Maple Grove Mayor Mark Steffenson in his opening remarks at the event. “It is a very exciting day.” Steffenson thanked all of the partners involved in the project, stating the dome was a “great collaborative project."
The inflated dome will be up from November to April each year, according to the city of Maple Grove winter 2011 newsletter. During the spring, summer and fall sports seasons, an artificial turf field serves the school district and community football, soccer, lacrosse field for use during the spring, summer and fall sports seasons.
The covered facility will be available for use by any school in the Osseo School District during the school day, according to the District 279 website, and “can be used after school by the athletic programs at Maple Grove Senior High, Osseo Senior High, and Park Center Senior High.”
A walking track, located around the parameter of the fields, is also available specified evening and weekend hours. A November dome walking track calendar available on the city of Maple Grove website outlines the dates open for use.
Many of the speakers at the opening event Nov. 19 thanked those involved in the planning process and collaboration, also describing how the dome would be beneficial to their organization and the community.
“It’s an example of how the city and school district can work together,” District 279 School Board Member Jim Burgett said.
“With soccer becoming more popular, indoor space is becoming more challenging,” MapleBrook Soccer President John Travis said. “..Building a facility will help all our players spend more time developing the sport and it’ll be closer to home.”
Speakers event included Maple Grove Mayor Mark Steffenson, Maple Grove Parks and Recreation Board Chair Tim Phenow, District 279 School Board Member Jim Burgett, Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Johnson, MapleBrook Soccer President John Travis and Osseo Maple Grove Athletic Association President Tim Murphy.
The multipurpose dome has been project Steffenson said he wanted to see get done during his time as mayor, stating, “it took awhile to get everything coordinated.”
“It’s nice to see it a reality,” he said. The facility, he said, is bigger than the Plymouth dome spanning a “full football field.”
Soccer, baseball, lacrosse, football, softball and other youth organizations in and around Maple Grove will have an opportunity to schedule the facility to use. During school hours, all schools in the Osseo School District will have a chance to utilize the facility. After school, the athletic programs at Maple Grove Senior High, Osseo Senior High, and Park Center Senior High can use the dome.
“Folks in the school district are excited to have the facility,” District 279 Superintendent Kate Maguire said in an interview with Patch. Protocol, including transportation, has been setup for use of the facility by all three high schools in the school district: in Maple Grove, in Osseo and Park Center Senior High in Brooklyn Park. Maguire said elementary schools in the district are also seeing some of the possibilities for using the dome during the winter months.
“I’m very impressed with the energy and tenacity behind this for very many years,” she said, indicating the process started “way before” her time as district superintendent.
As part of a joint powers agreement, the Osseo School District provided the site and land behind Maple Grove Senior High for the turf and dome facility. The city of Maple Grove will manage and operate the dome and coordinate all dome usage and rental. Funds to build the multiuse facility were agreed upon through a partnership between the city and the youth athletic organizations the Osseo Maple Grove Athletic Association and Maplebrook Soccer Association. Hennepin County also pitched in some funding for the project as part of the Hennepin County Youth Sports Grant Program.
More information about how to rent the Maple Grove Sports Dome and the walking track availability can be found on the city of Maple Grove website here.