Need a new purse or travel bag? Why not get one one made from the Metrodome roof?
When the roof of the Hubert H. Humphry Metrodome took a tumble in 2010, Jim Cunningham, a Twins announcer, and Tim O’Phelan, son of a longtime Twins physician, plopped down $4,000 to purchase the inner-layer of it. That was apparently as far as they’d thought things out, because the pair ended up storing the material in a central Minnesota facility, unsure of what to do next.
In time O’Phelan, after realizing that the durable, waterproof fabric was in some ways similar to leather, contacted Tom Sega, president of Minnesota-based bag manufacturer Duluth Pack. Now that material is enjoying a second life as personal carry-alls, which is preferable to languishing in a landfill for a millennium and a half. ”The Domer” line of bags, available online or in the company’s Canal Park Duluth store, pairs the Teflon-coated fiberglass material with leather in a “classic English design,” all for just $485 (duffel) or $160 (shell).
The Duluth Pack website touts the durability of the bags, saying, “It’s an incredibly tough, yet flexible, material which compliments our lifetime guarantee.” (Translation: The bags are made from the roof of the Metrodome, so all bets are off.)
Tim Newcomb covers stadiums, design and technology for Sports Illustrated. Follow him on Twitter at @tdnewcomb.