Thursday, November 19, 2015

EPA Recognizes McCormick Place Food Service Provider for Outstanding Waste Reduction Efforts

SAVOR…Chicago remains committed to sustainable food service practices at the nation’s largest convention center

For Immediate Release 

CHICAGO, IL (November 19, 2015) — For the second consecutive year, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has recognized SAVOR…Chicago for outstanding waste reduction efforts in the category of Sports and Entertainment Venues for its initiatives at McCormick Place. SAVOR…Chicago is the food and beverage provider for McCormick Place.

SAVOR…Chicago was recognized for its use of sustainable material management practices to decrease wasted food at the nation’s largest convention center. SAVOR…Chicago was one of six winners in the category of “Data-driven Improvement by Sector” representing the highest percentage of wasted food diversion and prevention in their sector for 2014.

“The MPEA is committed to being at the forefront of sustainability throughout our food service operations and the convention campus,” said Lori Healey, CEO of the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority, owners of McCormick Place. “We are proud to set the standard for the meetings and convention industry and remain committed to upholding these environmentally- friendly standards for our customers and the environment as we continue to strive to further enhance innovation as it relates to sustainability.”

“SAVOR…Chicago is delighted to be recognized by the EPA for our ongoing efforts to reduce food waste at McCormick Place. We are proud to partner with MPEA to have a state-of-the-art sustainability initiative and are fully committed to improving sustainability at every step,” said Doug Bradley, SAVOR… Vice President of Culinary Operations. “We are all invested in making McCormick Place a model of effective large-scale sustainable food operations.
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About MPEA: 
The Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority (MPEA) owns McCormick Place, the largest exhibition and meeting facility in North America and the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place Hotel. The North, South and West Buildings as well as the Lakeside Center offer 2.6 million square feet of exhibition space. Located along Chicago’s lakefront, McCormick Place offers 173 meeting rooms, the 4,249 seat Arie Crown Theater and one of the largest ballrooms in the world.

Friday, November 13, 2015


Wichita, KS (November 13, 2015) - The Orpheum Performing Arts Centre, Ltd. is pleased to announce that it has renewed its management agreement with SMG, the world leader in venue management, effective January 1, 2016.
The Orpheum, a 501(c) 3 nonprofit arts and cultural organization, originally entered into a management agreement with SMG in September 2013 for a period of two years. The Orpheum recently renewed its contract with SMG for an additional five years through the year 2020.
SMG will continue its management of the programming, marketing and operations of the theatre and all of its productions, rentals and community events. SMG will also ensure that the theatre’s programming will continue to be active and diverse with a wide array of quality entertainment for all ages. SMG will work with the Orpheum to ensure that it continues to fulfill its mission to serve the community by partnering with community groups to utilize the theatre for a variety of events.
“We are very pleased with our relationship with SMG. They have been good partners and we look forward to five years of continuing improvement in the attendance and the diverse booking we have enjoyed with SMG,” said Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Orpheum Theatre, Harvey Sorensen.
With an annual attendance of over 65,000 people, the Orpheum’s partnership with SMG will ensure the long-term stability and growth of the theatre’s technical side of the operations, while the Orpheum’s Board and President remain focused on its Capital Campaign.
“SMG is extremely excited for the opportunity to continue its partnership with the Orpheum Theatre,” said General Manager of SMG Wichita, AJ Boleski. “The Orpheum is a critical piece of Wichita’s history and we look forward to continuing to assist in carrying out its mission through booking a diverse lineup of events and attracting top-notch events to Wichita.”
SMG’s Theatre Director at the Orpheum Theatre is Barney Byard. Byard will continue to manage the facility and its SMG staff. Byard is also responsible for booking acts at the Orpheum Theatre. The Theatre will continue to fund and maintain its own operating budget.

Frank Lapsley Appointed As New General Manager of The North Charleston Coliseum

Conshohocken, PA (November 13, 2015) - Beginning November 16, Frank Lapsley will take over as the new General Manager of the North Charleston Coliseum and Performing Arts Center in North Charleston, SC.
“I look forward to working with the SMG team in North Charleston and becoming an active part of the community,” said Lapsley. “We will continue to build on the legacy of these first-class facilities.”
Frank Lapsley will be transferring from his current position as the General Manager of the SMG-managed Cabarrus Arena and Events Center in Concord, NC in order to fill the opening at the coliseum. “Frank is an engaging leader,” said SMG Regional Vice President, Leonard Bonacci. “His charismatic leadership style has been successful in leading the team at Cabarrus Arena and Event Center for the past 10 years. That, combined with his 25 years in the sports and entertainment industry, makes for an exciting future.  We are thrilled to have Frank as part of our team in North Charleston.” Kenny Robinson, Cabarrus Arena’s Director of Operations, will be assuming an interim GM role after Lapsley’s departure.
“The City of North Charleston welcomes Frank Lapsley as the new General Manager of the North Charleston Coliseum, Performing Arts Center and Convention Center,” said R. Keith Summey, Mayor of the City of North Charleston. “He brings many years of experience and successes to our venues. The city has been providing quality events to the community since 1993 and we look forward to continuing this excellence with Frank and SMG.“

Thursday, November 12, 2015

SMG Wins In Two Categories In Venues Today’s 2015 Hall of Headlines Awards

Conshohocken, PA (November 11, 2015) - After receiving nominations in all five categories of the Hall of Headlines Awards, SMG took home awards in two: News and Ops & Tech. Doug Thornton, SMG Executive VP, and Regional VPs Steve Tadlock and Michael Krouse won the award from Venues Today’s News category, while Jim McCue, SVP, and John Bolton, VP, won for Ops & Tech.
Presented each year, the Hall of Headlines Award is Venues Today’s most prestigious honor. Awards are given in five different categories: News, Booking, Marketing, Ops & Tech, and Concessions. Recipients are nominated and elected by Venues Today readers, and the awards are given to the candidates who have made a difference in the facilities industry during the year.
The News honor was given to Doug Thornton, Steve Tadlock, and Michael Krouse for leading the effort in winning the contract for the iconic Los Angeles Greek Theatre. After many months of work in an extremely competitive process that was covered by national media, SMG was awarded the contract from the City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks.

SMG’s Jim McCue and John Bolton were awarded the Ops & Tech honor for developing a specialized tool that allows SMG facilities to attain higher and consistent standards and results, with a dedicated web-based intranet marketing support services site. Along with the specialized tool, McCue and Bolton also started a company-wide Best Practices program. In order to effectively integrate the Best Practices program and adequate corporate oversight of facility marketing via a network of Regional Directors of Marketing that serve 68 arenas, 61 theaters, and 13 stadiums in the SMG network, SMG utilizes the intranet website as a central repository for the best practices programs, sample venue marketing plans, sales plans, press releases, social media plans, public relations plans, media-buying contracts, operating standards and more.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Summit League Basketball Championships to Remain in Sioux Falls Through 2022

League and Sioux Falls Sports Authority exercise five-year option

ELMHURST, Ill. – The Summit League and Sioux Falls Sports Authority have exercised the option years of their long-term agreement that will keep The Summit League Basketball Championships in Sioux Falls through 2022. The five-year option from 2018-2022 was part of the original contract announced in Oct. 2012.

“Sioux Falls not only has been a tremendous host of The Summit League Basketball Championships, it has become a home,” said Summit League Commissioner Tom Douple. “It is truly remarkable to continually see the bar raised and have attendance records broken each year. This tournament is synonymous with Sioux Falls thanks to the support of our fans, many of whom plan their calendars around the event. The Summit League Basketball Tournament has been a tremendous success story and the league is excited about furthering the long-term growth of this premier event.”

Since 2009, The Summit League Basketball Championships have been played before record crowds in Sioux Falls, making the city the longest-running continuous host of the event. The Sioux Falls Arena was home to The Summit League Basketball Championships from 2009-14 and the event began a new era in 2015 by moving into the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center.

“In 2009, we were honored to have the privilege to host the first Summit League Basketball Championships in Sioux Falls,” said Sioux Falls Sports Authority Executive Director Wes Hall. “Now seven years later, as we enter into our new agreement to continue as the host through 2022, we are still honored to have the privilege of hosting one of the most successful tournaments in the country. This extension shows the faith The Summit League has in us to host a great tournament and we look forward to putting on a great show for many years to come.”

Including a total attendance of 60,007, which smashed the previous mark by an astounding 33 percent, the 2015 Summit League Basketball Championships set 11 all-time men’s and women’s attendance records. The men’s semifinal round drew 10,153 spectators, the highest total for any tournament session in league history. The women’s tournament posted the nation’s top single-session attendance figure (8,171 for the first quarterfinal) and the second-best championship game (6,926) and tournament average (6,099) marks in 2015.

The Summit League’s top five men’s/women’s combined total tournament, women’s tournament and women’s championship game attendance marks along with the top two men’s tournament figures have been recorded in Sioux Falls.

By the end of the current agreement, Sioux Falls will have hosted 14 consecutive Summit League Basketball Championships from 2009-2022. That stretch will extend league records for both consecutive and total tournaments hosted (14) by more than double the previous mark of five. By 2022, the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center (eight) and Sioux Falls Arena (six) venues will have each eclipsed the previous single-site hosting record.

This year’s “March to the Summit” reaches its pinnacle at The Summit League Basketball Championships, March 5-8 at the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center. The Summit League and Sioux Falls Sports Authority will host the 2016 NCAA Women’s Basketball Sioux Falls Regional, March 25 & 27 at the same venue.


The Summit League offers 19 championship sports and has a combined enrollment of over 120,000 at nine institutions, including four located in top 60 U.S. metro populations and two land-grant universities. Member institutions include: Denver (University of Denver), Fort Wayne (Indiana University-Purdue University-Fort Wayne), IUPUI (Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis), North Dakota State University, Omaha (University of Nebraska Omaha), Oral Roberts University, the University of South Dakota, South Dakota State University and Western Illinois University. Called “March’s Best-Kept Secret” by USA Today, The Summit League Basketball Championships further established itself as one of the nation’s top tournaments by smashing league attendance figures in 11 categories, including total attendance by an astounding 33 percent, at the new Denny Sanford PREMIER Center in Sioux Falls, S.D. For more information about the league and to "See The Summit", visit, follow Summit League Basketball on Twitter @summithoops and watch the weekly “Inside The Summit League” show at

The Sioux Falls Sports Authority was formed in 2006 by community leaders to recruit major sporting events to the Sioux Falls area. The organization attracts international, national, regional and state sporting events. It is run by a board of directors made up of 15 community members, an executive director, and project director. The organization has hosted the Summit League Basketball Championships since 2009. In 2016, the Sioux Falls Sports Authority will host the Summit League Basketball Championships, the NCAA DII Wrestling National Championships, the NCAA DII Women’s Basketball Elite 8, the NCAA DI Women’s Basketball Regional, and the NCAA DII Women’s Volleyball National Championship. For more information, visit

SMG to serve as interim management contractor for Knoxville Civic Auditorium and Coliseum, Chilhowee Park & Exposition Center

SMG, the country’s leading entertainment and venue management company and manager of the Knoxville Convention Center, is pleased to provide the City of Knoxville with management services for the Civic Auditorium and Coliseum and Chilhowee Park & Exposition Center in an interim capacity.

The City of Knoxville today announced plans for a transition to private, third-party management of the city’s largest special event facilities, as has always been the case at the Knoxville Convention Center.

Because of its existing vendor status with the City of Knoxville as manager of the Knoxville Convention Center, SMG agreed to provide management services to the additional facilities at its current contractor rate as the city prepares a bid process to identify a permanent private management service. SMG has successfully managed the Knoxville Convention Center since its opening in 2002.

“We have been very impressed with SMG’s work at the Convention Center, and they have the level of professional expertise we need to keep our venues operating while we pursue a longer-term solution to our management needs,” said Christi Branscom, deputy to the mayor and the City’s chief operating officer. “SMG will ensure a great experience for the audiences, performers, sports teams and event organizers who use our facilities.”

SMG’s Knoxville Convention Center General Manager Mary Bogert will serve as the general manager of the Civic Auditorium and Coliseum and Chilhowee Park facilities. SMG Regional Vice President Craig Liston also will be located in Knoxville to provide additional support during the interim.

“The Civic Auditorium and Coliseum and Chilhowee Park are versatile facilities that provide popular entertainment and events to the community,” Liston said. “With our 13 years of managing the Knoxville Convention Center, we have the experience and talented staff in place to begin providing management services immediately. We are pleased to be in a position to offer this assistance to our partner, the City of Knoxville, as it transitions to private management of these facilities.”

SMG’s local leadership team will manage existing city employees, oversee all events and will be charged with bookings at both facilities.

Built in 1961, the Civic Auditorium and Coliseum is the largest city-owned facility in Knoxville and is conveniently located downtown near Interstate 40. The coliseum seats 6,500 guests and has 22,000 square feet of exhibit space. The building also houses a 2,500-seat auditorium; 10,000-square-foot exhibit hall; and 4,800-square-foot ballroom.

The facility is home to the Knoxville Ice Bears hockey team and the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra’s News Sentinel Pops Series, as well as a host site for large touring shows throughout the year, including Disney On Ice and Disney Live!.

Chilhowee Park & Exposition Center is an 81-acre, multi-purpose venue, which includes a 57,100-square-foot exhibition hall, three-acre lake, bandstand, 4,500-seat amphitheater, barns, arenas, playground and picnic shelters.  Chilhowee Park is home to the annual Tennessee Valley Fair and events and festivals throughout the year.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

SMG Hosts Industry Leaders at IEBA

Conshohocken, PA (October 22, 2015) - SMG, the worldwide leader of public facility management, hosted industry leaders from CAA, WME, Live Nation, Nederlander concerts, Bill Rogers Presents, NS2, Frank Productions, Feld Entertainment, and others at an SMG luncheon at the International Association of Entertainment Buyers Conference held in Nashville, TN from October 10-12.  SMG announced they have been selected by Onondaga County to manage the new 17,000 capacity Lakeview Amphitheater in Syracuse, NY as well as introduced Becky Colwell as the new GM of the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles.
SMG also sponsored the Promoter’s Alley event during the conference, connecting SMG venues with event promoters throughout the USA and Canada.  “Our SMG-managed venues met with event promoters to discuss the biggest acts and attractions for our arenas, theaters, and stadiums and our sponsorship of this event allows SMG venues to further their relationships,” said Jim McCue, SMG Senior Vice President of Entertainment.

SMG also sponsored a private luncheon connecting over 50 agents and promoters with SMG’s venue General Managers and Booking Executives.  “There is an ease of doing business with SMG in our family of venues and continuing to make connections with our key partners is critical to our future success,” said John Bolton, SMG Vice President of Entertainment and a member of the IEBA Board of Directors.