Are Vikings Whitewashing Bird Droppings Issue?

There are many big unanswered questions associated with the new stadium being constructed for the Minnesota Vikings.

  • How will we pay for our new sports palace if iPad gambling problems continue?
  • Will we be able to host a Super Bowl, so Johnny Manziel and the rest of the Vikings can enjoy home field advantage?
  • Will Andrew Zimmern’s Bizarre Foods be served at the new stadium (If so, I’m guessing polite Minnesotans will  call them “Different Foods,” so no one feels bad.)?

bird_poop_on_windshieldThose are important questions.  But I’m focused on something REALLY important:  How are we going to stop the world’s largest transparent roof from becoming the world’s largest collection of bird excrement?

I’m quite serious.  Think about it.  Your standard automobile windshield is about 15 square feet.  At that size, it is a bird shit magnet.  But, the saving grace is that your windshield is easily cleaned with a touch of a button, or at least with your feet planted firmly on the ground.

vikings_stadium_roofYour Vikings stadium transparent roof, on the other hand, will be 240,000 square feet, the largest such roof in the world.  Local birds will have a target that will be difficult to miss.  And so far as I know, Zygi Wilf is not springing for a ginormous windshield wiper system.  Because of this, I’m concerned our transparent roof could end up as gray as the Metrodome roof.

Pioneer Press reporter Bob Sansavere asked about this almost a year ago, and was given a curt answer by the Vikings’ Lester Bagley.

“The ETFE (ethylene-tetraflouroethylene) product is self-cleaning.”

Blue skies, nothing but blue skies, according to Mr. Bagley.  Mr. Sansavere didn’t probe for details about that “self cleaning” claim, but I remain curious.   How exactly does “self-cleaning” work?

  • Do plopping molecules disintegrate when encountering with ethylene-tetraflouroethylene molecules?
  • Is ETFE so darn slippery that bird poop immediately slides off of it? (In which case I have pedestrian-oriented follow-up questions.)
  • Are the Vikings planning to deploy something from Ronald Reagan’s strategic defense initiative (SDI) to protect the roof from sparrow-launched missiles?
  • Do we believe that local grackles will have so much reverence for the dazzling beauty of ETFE that they will voluntarily take their business elsewhere?
  • Can I get this miraculous bird shit-proof technology installed on my car and home?

Mr. Bagley’s “self cleaning” claim might very well be true. But since we taxpayers are buying about half a billion dollars worth of stock in the world’s biggest shrine to ethylene-tetraflouroethylene, I want to hear more.

– Loveland

About Joe Loveland

Joe Loveland operates Loveland Communications (, a sole proprietorship that provides marketing, public relations, and public affairs counsel and services. He previously held communications-related positions with U.S. Senator Tom Daschle, the Minnesota Citizens League, Minnesota Attorney General Hubert Humphrey III, Allina Hospitals and Clinics, the Minnesota Department of Health, and Weber Shandwick public relations. He blogs at, and also has blogged at