FAQs about the Monolithic Dome Builders Workshop in Dawson, Texas

Workshop attendees complete two domes

A recent class of Monolithic Dome Builders Workshop attendees standing in front of two Monolithic Domes they built in Dawson, Texas.

Schedule and pricing

When is the Monolithic Dome Builders Workshop?

MDI holds the Monolithic Dome Builders Workshops semi-annually in April and September. Typically the class is scheduled from Tuesday to Saturday on the second full week of the month. Check our events calendar for specific dates and times.

I can’t attend in April or September, can you offer classes in the summer?

Texas summers are hot. Dangerously hot. Like, it can kill you if you are not physically prepared kind of hot so, no, we don’t offer classes in summer.

Can my daughter/son attend?

All attendees must be 18-years-old or older.

What is the cost and do you offer discounts?

On-site tuition is $2,495. You can save $500 if you sign up for the early-bird discount at least 30-days before classes start. You can save $250 if you sign up for regular pricing up to the week before the workshop begins.

Is tuition refundable?

We refund full tuition if you cancel at least 14-days before the workshop. If you cannot make it and it’s less than 14-days before classes, we charge a $295 cancellation fee and return the rest. There are no refunds during workshop week, so let us know immediately if you can’t make it.

Do you offer other discounts or coupons?

No, we don’t offer any other discounts. The best price is the early-bird tuition.

Map of DFW area

Drive to Texas or fly into DFW or Love Field. We recommend you get a hotel in Hillsboro. Check-in is Tuesday morning at 8 a.m. at MDI in Italy, Texas. The job site is in Dawson, Texas.

@ OpenStreetMap contributors

Transportation and lodging

Where is the nearest airport?

There are two actually — DFW and Dallas Love Field. DFW is an international airport with direct flights to and from cities all over the world. Most major airlines serve the Dallas area with Southwest Airlines flying to Love Field, Delta serves both airports, and American Airlines is the dominant presence at DFW.

Where is the Monolithic Dome Institute?

The Monolithic Dome Institute is at the Monolithic Dome Research Park at 177 Dome Park Place, Italy, Texas, 76651. It’s about an hour south of the Dallas airports.

Where is the Monolithic Dome Builders Workshop job site?

The current job site is in Dawson, Texas.

Where should I stay?

We recommend you stay in a hotel in Hillsboro, Texas. It’s the best location for driving to the job site in Dawson and also going to Italy for registration, orientation, dome tours, and the Saturday BBQ.

Does MDI provide accommodations or transporation?

No. Attendees are responsible for arranging all transportation and accommodations. Attendees are not allowed to camp or park RVs at the Monolithic Dome Research Park nor the Dawson job site.

Are pets allowed?

Sorry, no pets.

Wear appropriate clothing

Workshop attendees wearing Tyvek suits (all), a spray sock (left), a dust mask (left), safety glasses (all), and a respirator (middle). Remember to bring good boots and work gloves.

Food and clothing

What about meals?

MDI provides a continental breakfast with donuts, orange juice, apple juice, coffee, and an assortment of fruits — bananas, apples, oranges.

We also include a daily lunch. Over the week, we provide pizza, fried chicken, a variety of sandwiches, potato salad, macaroni and cheese, fruit trays, vegetable trays, and more fresh fruit — plus whatever donuts are left over. On Saturday, we have a Texas BBQ with brisket, chicken, mashed potatoes, macaroni and cheese, biscuits, and beans.

We keep a supply of water and soft drinks on hand and ask that everyone keep themselves hydrated.

After classes end at 5 p.m., we offer snacks and a chance to visit with instructors and each other. For many people, this is their favorite part of the workshop.

Dinner is not provided.

What accommodations do you make for people with food allergies?

We provide a range of food items, including fruits and vegetables, but we cannot accommodate special diets. That said, you should still call us at (972) 483-7423. We can tell you what we plan to serve that week and can maybe make some adjustments. Ultimately, it’s up to you to make arrangements for special dietary needs.

What clothing and safety equipment does MDI provide?

MDI provides a hard hat, safety glasses, dust masks, and a filtered respirator. We also include a spray sock and a Tyvek suit.

What clothing do I need to bring?

It’s a job site. Wear clothes you don’t mind getting dirty or even have to throw away. This is especially true for spraying polyurethane foam, although the Tyvek suit is incredibly helpful in protecting your clothes. Many people find overalls are useful because they stay-in-place while working, but any old clothes will do. Thrift stores are a treasure for buying work clothes.

Long pants and shirts are required. No shorts are allowed and we don’t care if you have rock-hard abs or a beer belly, keep your shirt on.

Bring work gloves, a hat, and boots or over-boots. The job site is muddy sometimes, so be prepared.

We also recommend you bring a pair of pliers. It’s not required, but they are helpful.

What to expect

What is the daily schedule?

Meet at the Monolithic Dome Research Park at 8 a.m. on Tuesday for check-in, orientation, classes, lunch, and a tour of the research park domes. In the evening we tour the nearby Italy High School gymnasium.

On Wednesday we meet at Dawson at 8 a.m. for hands-on lessons in spraying polyurethane foam and rebar. In-between the hands-on training we gather in a nice, air-conditioned building nearby for classroom instruction. Thursday typically starts in Italy with more classroom time and hands-on shotcrete training. Then everyone heads to Dawson for more shotcrete work. Friday is spent in Dawson spraying shotcrete and more class time. Saturday is in Italy for final lessons and a real Texas BBQ at noon.

If you have more questions, please call our office at (972) 483-7423 or use our web form to contact us.