— by Kim Davenport
UW Tacoma student Kaylee Kent began her research paper, which discusses the Tacoma Dome’s importance as a music venue, with a simple question: when people think about the City of Tacoma, what is the first thing that comes to mind? She answers her question as follows:
For many people, it is the Tacoma Dome. The unique structure of the venue draws attention to itself and Mt. Rainier is often visible in the background – making for a perfectly picturesque view. The Tacoma Dome is a multi-purpose venue and since its opening in 1983, it has held countless incredible musical performances in a wide variety of genres.
The initial idea for the Tacoma Dome began with a group of citizens – proof that community organizing can have quite the impact! Starting in the late 1970’s, citizens of Tacoma began speaking of their desire for a “mini-dome” which obviously grew into something much larger. They wanted a multi-use facility that could host athletic events, trade shows, and concerts. “A Dome of Our Own” became the battle cry of these individuals.
Kaylee’s paper provides an excellent summary of the design and construction of the facility – vital reading for those too young to remember the history themselves, or newbies to the City of Destiny! She goes on to mention just a few of the significant musicians who have performed there, beginning with David Bowie on August 11, 1983: