New Orleans, LA

The Day when Superdome first opened in New Orleans

Jean-Baptiste Dickens

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Photo from the New Orleans Public Library

NEW ORLEANS, LA -- The Louisiana Superdome is a multi-purpose stadium located at the Central Business District in New Orleans. It is home to the New Orleans Saints of the National Football League, NFL.

On August 3, 1975, the Superdome received its official inauguration. Al Hirt and Pete Fountain, two jazz musicians, performed at the occasion. Tulane Stadium was also condemned on the same day.

Curtis and Davis, a New Orleans modernist architectural firm, drew up the plans in 1967, and the Louisiana Superdome opened in 1975. The steel frame spans 13 acres (5.3 hectares), and the 273-foot (83-meter) dome is composed of a lamellar, multi-ringed frame with a diameter of 680 feet (207 meters), making it the world's largest static domed structure.

The Superdome continued to celebrate its grand inauguration between August 28 and September 14, 1975, with appearances by Bob Hope, Telly Savalas, Dorothy Lamour, Karen Valentine, and Raquel Welch. The Allman Brothers, Marshall Tucker Band, Wet Willie, Charlie Daniels Band, O'Jays, Isley Brothers, Temptations, Donald Byrd and the Blackbyrds, and the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus were among the performers.

On September 5, 1976, the Superdome hosted its first soccer match. Two local club clubs (Costa Rica and Olympia) competed in a doubleheader, followed by a post-season encounter between the New York Cosmos and the Dallas Tornado in the North American Soccer League. Pelé and Kyle Rote Jr. led their respective teams, but Werner Roth and Ramon Mifflin scored for the Cosmos in their 2-1 victory.

The Superdome is the United States' oldest domed stadium. Six Super Bowls, four Final Fours, the 1988 Republican National Convention, and Pope John Paul II's visit to New Orleans in 1987 have all taken place there.

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