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The "re-opening of the Kingdome went off without a hitch," but some fans wished more had been done during the $40M repair job on the facility. Seahawk fan Doug Hostetter: "I'm not complaining, but for that much money, you'd think it would look a lot better. It looks the same to me." The only "visible difference was a beige ceiling that replaced the old-grayish white one." Some fans wore hard hats to mark the event. Brian Kasen, construction manager: "It's nice to see people back in the seats after a very intense effort" (Jim Street, SEATTLE POST- INTELLIEGNCER, 11/7).
The Redskins' stadium plans are in a "holding pattern." The team can't go forward with their plans in Anne Arundel County, MD, without reversing the county's previous decision on appeal, and they have been "unable to make much headway on alternative sites because many of the political leaders who must smooth the way are immersed in elections." But after Tuesday's elections, Redskins Owner Jack Kent Cook "could preside over a new competition for his favor." Cooke's first choice is Laurel, MD, but that hasn't prevented developers and leaders in MD, VA, and DC from pushing other sites. The Redskins appeal in Laurel is unlikely to be heard until January, but both sides are "trying to influence the elections." Orioles Owner Peter Angelos, who opposes a stadium in Laurel, has given a $15,000 loan at 6.6% interest to Anne Arundel County Exec candidate Theodore Sophocleus, who opposes public funding for the stadium. Redskins zoning attorney Harry Blumenthal and his law practice donated $1,000 to Sophocleus (Dan Beyers, WASHINGTON POST, 11/7).
The Spurs' season-opener "turned wet and wild when a high pressure water cannon in the Alamodome erupted during the indoor fireworks show, unleashing a torrent that soaked hundreds of fans and delayed the game by 50 minutes." Red Cross officials reported treating 31 fans who were injured during the accident. Mike Abington, Director of the Alamodome, "blamed the pyrotechnics for the disaster" that lasted about 4 minutes. "The cannon gushed about 2,500 to 2,900 gallons per minute," drenching some of the lower sections. Abington said the fireworks should not have set off the cannon, as Spurs officials met with fire personnel earlier in the day and "arranged to cap the smoke and fire detectors in the roof." Most of the fans decided to stay for the game, with only about 150 people asking for ticket refunds (SAN ANTONIO NEWS EXPRESS, 11/7). CNN's Fred Hickman said Friday's MCI Proof Positive Play of the Day goes to the Spurs' "Marketing and Promotions guy down in San Antonio, who is sitting in a room tonight trying to think up an explanation to give his boss as to why those indoor fireworks" were necessary ("Sports Tonight," CNN, 11/4).
The Manitoba Entertainment Complex (MEC) has hired Dominion Hunt as construction manager of a proposed new arena in Winnipeg. The site is yet unchosen, but MEC spokesperson Cam Osler says the timeline for the building is "so tight" that the design needs to be ready if the project is approved. Dominion Hunt will "oversee the design, budget and tendering of the building," including a preliminary design and budget by mid-December. Osler wouldn't reveal the amount of the Dominion Hunt contract but said that it is "broken down into stages." The contract is being paid with MEC-raised funds, rather than the $1.5M which the city recently guaranteed for the arena (Kim Guttormson, WINNIPEG FREE PRESS, 11/5).