The Rhinelander Dome is the in final phases of construction.
The dome was inflated over the weekend. It’s taken years of planning and fundraising and months of construction to get to this moment.
“There’s been a lot of work going into this a lot of preparation and to see that it’s up and to see all the excitement in our community, especially during these times right now with COVID, any positive news is great news. I’m just excited for the community, our students and our staff. This is real,” said School District of Rhinelander Activities Director Brian Paulson.
Saturday afternoon the wind finally cooperated long enough for contractors to inflate the Athletic Dome behind Rhinelander High School.
“Adjustments were made as needed as inflation went up and by Saturday evening it was fully inflated,” said Paulson.
There’s still plenty of work that still needs to be done before it’s completed including hanging the lights, the donor signs, and the netting that separates the different areas.
Paulson says there’s still a couple weeks of work left, but it will be finished enough by November 3rd to be used as a polling location as planned.
“We won’t have everything complete by that date. We were hoping we would, but we’re looking at timelines, we should be close,” said Paulson.
The permanent, inflatable dome will be able to fit a full-size football field or soccer field, two softball fields, and four basketball, tennis, or pickleball courts, depending on its setup.
It will also be open to the community for different events and programs.
“This is phenomenal for the community. The more tournaments or craft fairs or anybody that uses the dome, keeps people here in Rhinelander. They don’t have to travel to go to such things and also for the tournament that’s people in our hotels, eating at our restaurants, stopping at the gas stations. It’s just incredible what this opportunity has to do there for the community,” said Paulson.