Friday, February 25, 2011

SMG Jacksonville Employees Honored at Rose Awards

SMG Jacksonville was proudly representated at the North Florida Hotel & Lodging Association's ROSE (Recognition of Service Excellence) Awards on February 22. Included in the nominations for outstanding customer service were Carla Ross (Savor), Brenda Mallory Small (SMG), Angie Green (SMG) and Lucious Hart (CSC), with Brenda taking home the award for Guest Services - Front Desk. Congratulations to Brenda and all the nominees!

According the North Florida Hotel & Loding Association:
"ROSE Award honorees are true industry champions for their companies and our region. We hope you will take the opportunity to recognize your employees who exemplify service excellence by nominating them for this prestigious award.

The mission of the ROSE Award is to recognize front line hospitality employees who exemplify excellent customer service. These industry champions, through one-on –one or behind-the-scenes contact, create an extraordinary visitor experience in Northeast Florida."

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Charitable Giving in Tulsa: SMG ROCKS THIS TOWN

SMG Tulsa has set up a great new charitable program involving the staff at the BOK Center and Tulsa Convention Center called SMG Rocks This Town. Some of the organizations they're already planning on helping include:
Big Brothers Big Sisters
Animal Rescue Foundation & Tulsa “Bark Park”
Junior Achievement Program/Tulsa Public Schools
Up with Trees
Habitat for Humanity
Oklahomans for Equality

Monday, February 21, 2011

Tulsa City Council Awards SMG Special Proclamation for Outstanding Service

SMG was honored with a special proclamation during the Tulsa City Council meeting on Thursday, February 17. Councilor Chris Trail presented the award in Recognition of Outstanding Service to John Bolton, General Manager of the BOK Center and Tulsa Convention Center, on behalf of SMG.

During the presentation, Councilor Trail recognized the leadership and organization that has helped the BOK Center consistently rank in the top 10 arenas nationally. This success has extended throughout the Northeastern region of Oklahoma and impacted the quality of life for thousands of Tulsans and citizens in surrounding areas. He also lauded Mr. Bolton's attention to detail and acknowledged the City of Tulsa was fortunate to have someone like him responsible for the venues.

As Mr. Bolton accepted the honor, he thanked the Tulsa City Council for their continued support of SMG. “It has been a truly great experience working with the City of Tulsa. The BOK Center is an amazing venue and I am so proud of the amazing team of SMG employees who work hard every day to make this venue a success."

Friday, February 18, 2011

Hawai'i Convention Center Caps Off 2010 with Three Major Global Events

The Hawai'i Convention Center finished a successful 2010 by hosting more than 20,000 people from nearly 100 countries. These major international events included the American Academy of Periodontology (AAP) 2010 Annual Meeting in October, and December’s Pan Pacific VEX Robotics Tournament and the PACIFICHEM 2010 Congress.

The spotlight will continue to shine on Hawai'i in 2011 with Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) 2011 Leaders’ Meeting in November. The Convention Center will also host: The 70th Anniversary Association for Asian Studies (AAS) Annual Conference in March; the 63rd Annual American Academy of Neurology (AAN) 2011 Annual Meeting in April; the 27th Annual Pacific Rim International Conference on Disabilities in April; and the 164th Annual Meeting of the American Psychiatric Association (APA) in May.

Visit the Hawai'i Convention Center site.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

SMG in the News: A Profitable Fall for the BOK Center

SMG management and the staff at BOK Center have worked hard to bring big-name events to Tulsa, and it has paid off, reports Tulsa World.

CONSOL Energy Center Named Best New Venue

CONSOL Energy Center was named the nation’s Best New Major Concert Venue for 2010 at the 22nd annual POLLSTAR Concert Industry Awards in Los Angeles.

POLLSTAR has been the concert industry’s leading business trade publication for 30 years, and voting for the annual awards is conducted by a cross-section of top industry professionals.

“It is a phenomenal honor to receive this award from POLLSTAR because the award-winners are nominated and voted on by the leading executives in the concert industry,” said Jay Roberts, general manager of CONSOL Energy Center. “I think it says a lot for Pittsburgh and our region and all the great people here who have worked so hard to make it all possible.”

CONSOL Energy Center, which opened its doors to back-to-back sold-out shows by the legendary Paul McCartney in August, also hosted sold-out concerts by Lady Gaga, Rush, Roger Waters, the Eagles, Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Chelsea Handler and Justin Bieber in 2010. Upcoming shows include Bon Jovi (Feb. 11-12), Lady Gaga, Elton John and New Kids On The Block/Backstreet Boys.

The new arena is home to the Pittsburgh Penguins and also hosts Division I college basketball and a wide range of other events, including family shows. In March, the new Pittsburgh Power franchise of the Arena Football League will begin play here.

“Our goal from the start was to build a dynamic multi-purpose arena that would be an entertainment magnet for Pittsburgh and the region,” said David Morehouse, CEO and President of the Pittsburgh Penguins. “Congratulations to Jay and his staff for all they’ve done to make CONSOL Energy Center the best new major concert venue in the country.”

Record Breaking Bon Jovi Shows Highlight Five Sellouts In Six Days At CONSOL Energy Center

Bon Jovi rocked Pittsburgh this weekend with two sold-out concerts at CONSOL Energy Center, which marked the top two attended indoor concert events ever in Pittsburgh.

The two concerts were part of a streak of five sold-out events in six days at Pittsburgh's new multi-purpose entertainment center.

The Friday, February 11 crowd of 18,571 for Bon Jovi at CONSOL Energy Center also was the highest attended indoor event in Pittsburgh history, breaking the previous record of 18,322 for the Penguins/Atlanta Thrashers game on December 28, 2010. On Saturday, February 12, Bon Jovi drew a crowd of 18,240. The previous indoor concert attendance record was 17,764 for the Jimmy Page/Robert Plant show on March 25, 1995 at the Civic Arena.

Pittsburgh Penguins games against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Tuesday, February 8 and the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday, February 10 drew standing-room-only crowds of 18,147 and 18,208 respectively, pushing the Penguins' sellout streak to 196 games.

The Duquesne University Dukes took on the Xavier Musketeers in a battle for first place in the Atlantic 10 Conference on Sunday, February 13 in front of a capacity crowd of 10,509 – the most fans to turn out for a Duquesne home game (except against city-rival Pitt) since 10,042 watched the Dukes take on #3 Maryland at the Pittsburgh Civic Arena on February 23, 1975.

CONSOL Energy Center was recently named the nation's Best New Major Concert Venue for 2010 at the 22nd annual POLLSTAR Concert Industry Awards.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

SMG in the News: "Wonderful Outcome" at Intrust Bank Arena

Wichita's Intrust Bank Arena netted more than $2M profit in its first year in operation, earning SMG praise for their management. “SMG has done a superb job in this first year,” said Assistant County Manager Ron Holt. “They’ve exceeded our expectations."

New Company, Novatour, to Provide Funding for Major Concert Tours

NEW ORLEANS, LA – FEBRUARY 7, 2011 – Today, Film Production Capital, the national leader in tax incentive-based financing for the motion picture industry, announced a joint venture with SMG, the worldwide leader in stadium and arena management, to provide capital for the live touring industry. The new joint-venture, called ‘Novatour’ plans to take advantage of Louisiana’s unique live performance tax incentive, which is designed to grow the state’s live music and entertainment industry as a similar incentive did for Louisiana’s thriving film industry. The name Novatour was coined from the French word “novateur,” meaning “innovative.” Leveraging Louisiana’s Live Performance Tax Credit, the only one of its kind in the country, Novatour intends to stay true to the name by introducing a new model to the live entertainment industry.

Under the program, live touring acts may become eligible for cash advances or operating expense savings, depending on the specific structure and conditions of each deal. Live performances must originate or rehearse in Louisiana to become eligible for the funding.

“This is a critical time for live performance touring,” says Will French, President of both Novatour and Film Production Capital. “We believe this offers a creative solution to reducing the financial risk associated with a tour launch and will provide a significant incentive for the industry to do business in Louisiana.”

FPC’s leadership in tax incentive-based financing and SMG’s worldwide network of venues and industry relationships result in a powerful combination of experience and financial capacity.

Through other strategic partnerships, Novatour will also offer an array of the goods and services needed to develop and produce a concert tour – including fleet operations, rehearsal venues and accommodations, equipment rental, stage design and construction, film and video production and merchandising. Use of these in-house, Louisiana-based services will result in increased dollars available for touring acts.

“Novatour will enable the live touring industry to leverage this unique Louisiana tax credit program and receive valuable economic benefits,” says Doug Thornton, Senior Vice President, SMG. “Our collective expertise, coupled with the ability to offer financial incentives through this program, uniquely positions this region as a perfect place for an artist to begin their North American tour.”

In 2002, the State of Louisiana introduced the first film tax incentive program. Now, having developed a statewide infrastructure around the tax credit, Louisiana’s film industry stands as the third largest in the nation, approaching nearly $1 billion in annual economic impact to the state. Using a similar approach, Novatour sees the live performance tax credit as a tool to transform New Orleans into a launching pad for live performance tours and strengthen New Orleans’ prominence as a music city.

“As the birthplace of Jazz and home to Funk, Blues, and Brass music, New Orleans has always embraced and supported musicians of every genre. With Novatour, we intend to complement the city’s musical core by catering to the business of music as well,” says French. “The region’s growth into a music business epicenter will take time and nourishment, and we believe Novatour will be the catalyst.”

For more information on Novatour, please visit

Monday, February 7, 2011

BOK Center Receives Second Nomination for "Venue of the Year" by the Academy of Country Music

For the second year in a row, Tulsa’s BOK Center, has been nominated by the Academy of Country Music for Venue of the Year. In order to be considered for this award, the venue must have bought or promoted at least 5 (five) country concerts during the prior calendar year of January 1 to December 31, 2010 and be in good standing with all agents. The BOK Center hosted these country concerts last year:
• George Strait with Reba
• Tim McGraw
• Hank Williams Jr.
• Brooks & Dunn
• Carrie Underwood
• Brad Paisley

Venue of the Year is an off-camera award presented at the annual “ACM Honors” event held in Nashville at a later date. The award is considered a part of the 46th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards and will be voted on by the professional membership of the Academy.

The BOK Center will be competing for the award against the following venues:

First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre - Chicago, IL
Meadowbrook U.S. Cellular Pavilion - Gilford, NH
Ryman Auditorium - Nashville, TN
Sprint Center - Kansas City, MO

Friday, February 4, 2011

SMG Names Mike Cera General Manager of Stockton, CA Venues

Stockton, CA (February 4, 2011) – SMG is proud to announce the appointment of Mike Cera as General Manager of the Stockton Arena, Stockton Ballpark, the Bob Hope Theatre, and the Oak Park Ice Arena.

Since joining SMG in 2000, Mr. Cera has worked in a series of advancing positions in the sports and entertainment facility management industry including tenures at SMG facilities in Florida, Georgia, and most recently as the General Manager at CenturyTel Center in Bossier City, LA. Prior to CenturyTel Center, Mr. Cera served as Director of Booking at the Gwinnett Center in Gwinnett, GA, and as Director of Event Services at the now named Bank of Atlantic Center in Sunrise, Florida.

“I am extremely excited and honored to have been selected as the General Manager of the Stockton Arena, Bob Hope Theatre, Stockton Ballpark and Oak Park Ice Arena. They are outstanding facilities and I look forward to working with the community to help these facilities realize their full potential. The SMG staff and I will work diligently to bring quality entertainment to Stockton,” stated Cera.

SMG reached an agreement with the City of Stockton to provide booking, programming and general operations for the Stockton venues, effective February 25, 2011. The Stockton City Council unanimously (7-0) approved the five-year Management Agreement, with a five-year renewal option, on January 25, 2011. "We are so pleased that SMG is moving quickly to get the right people in place to make our facilities a success," said Mayor Ann Johnston. "We welcome Mr. Cera to Stockton and look forward to working with him."

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

2010 Record Year for the Lynnwood Convention Center

LYNNWOOD, WA (February 2, 2011)  -  SMG, the world leader in venue management, marketing and development, announced that the 55,000 square foot Lynnwood Convention Center had its most successful year ever in 2010. SMG's Kelvin D. Moore, General Manager of the Lynnwood Convention Center, made the announcement earlier this week at the Lynnwood Public Facilities District Board Meeting.

The more than $2 Million in gross revenues was the highest in the Center's history, 10% more than 2009 and 23% growth since 2006. Facility users also gave SMG their highest customer satisfaction ratings in the Center's history."SMG has really done an outstanding job," said Mike Echelbarger, Board Chair for the Lynnwood Public Facilities District. "The fact that they were able to exceed the $2 Million mark for the first time and simultaneously increase customer satisfaction is testament to the skill and professionalism of their local management team," Echelbarger added.

"As the economy headed south in 2008, we had to find a new way of doing business that would minimize the impact of the recession while maintaining our focus on providing a first class guest experience," said Moore. "We embraced the challenge and our success in 2010 is a result of the creativity and dedication of every member of our team. I am very proud of them."

Convention centers across the country are designed and programmed to generate positive economic impact. In 2010 over 80,000 people attended 447 events at the Lynnwood Convention Center, generating an estimated $17.3 Million in direct and indirect economic impact for the local economy. "The Lynnwood Convention Center is a catalyst of Lynnwood's economic development and revitalization of our City Center," said David Kleitsch, Lynnwood's Economic Development Director. "The City commends SMG and the Lynnwood Public Facilities District on their success."

The Lynnwood hotel community has seen the positive impact of the Center first hand. "Our hotel experienced tremendous growth in 2010, and a big part of our success is attributable to the Lynnwood Convention Center and SMG," said Ernest G. Matthews, Jr., Director of Sales for the Courtyard by Marriott Lynnwood. Snohomish County Lodging Association president, Julie Horrigan added, "We have seen some really positive steps by the SMG staff towards bringing in additional conventions and meeting business to Lynnwood, and we congratulate them on a banner year."

The Lynnwood Convention Center hosts a wide range of events including, conventions, corporate meetings, auctions, weddings, QuinceaƱeras, bar mitzvahs, product launches, consumer shows, community gatherings, religious services, and memorial services. Through five full years of operation, the Center has hosted 2,255 events and over 383,000 guests, generating an estimated $70 Million in direct and indirect economic impact for the local economy. The Lynnwood Public Facilities District owns the Lynnwood Convention Center and contracts with SMG to manage the facility.

About Lynnwood Convention Center

Opened in 2005 in Lynnwood, Washington, The Lynnwood Convention Center is situated in the heart of Washington's aerospace, high tech and bio-med corridor.Conveniently located near I-5, I-405 and Hwy 99, the Center offers individualized meeting spaces with full onsite audiovisual and electrical support, and first class, 5-star resort quality in-house catering.The facility has adopted green/sustainable initiatives that include composting, an extensive recycling program, and transitioning to the use of all green chemicals.The Lynnwood Convention Center is owned by the Lynnwood Public Facilities District and is managed by SMG. For more information, visit Frontier is the official Wi-Fi partner and Media Lounge sponsor of the Lynnwood Convention Center.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

SMG Prepares To Begin Operation Of Stockton, CA Venues

SMG to Manage Stockton Arena, Bob Hope theatre, Banner Island Ballpark and Oak Park Ice Arena

West Conshohocken, PA (February 1, 2011) – SMG has reached an agreement with the City of Stockton, CA to provide booking, programming and general operations for the Stockton Arena, Stockton Ballpark, Bob Hope Theatre and the Oak Park Ice Arena, effective February 25, 2011. The Stockton City Council unanimously (7-0) approved the five-year Management Agreement, with a five-year renewal option, the evening of January 25, 2011.

“We are excited to have a professional management company with such great enthusiasm working in our City, helping us fulfill our vision for a thriving downtown,” said Mayor Ann Johnston. “This is a new day in the City of Stockton.”

“SMG is thrilled to have the opportunity to begin its partnership with the Stockton City Council and the City of Stockton for the management of these wonderful sports and entertainment facilities,” said Bob Cavalieri, SMG Senior Vice President of Business Development. “We are ready to hit the ground running, and we look forward to a long and successful relationship.”

The Arena, which can accommodate up to 12,000, and the Theatre, which seats 2,042, along with the 5,200 fixed seat Ballpark, are state-of-the art facilities capable of accommodating any event.

“All of us at SMG’s Sports and Entertainment Division are anxious to begin booking these fine facilities,” said Jim McCue, Senior Vice President at Sports and Entertainment. “We are optimistic about the future of the Stockton facilities and our ability to provide more entertainment and sporting events for the community. We believe Stockton is a strong entertainment market, as evidenced by recent, sold out concerts and the Stockton Thunder which, since entering the League, have enjoyed ticket sales amongst the highest of any ECHL team in the country.”

The facilities will benefit from SMG’s leverage and experience, and their already substantial presence in the region, which includes the Rabobank Arena in Bakersfield, the Save Mart Center in Fresno, the Long Beach Arena and Convention Center, Oakland-Alameda’s Oracle Arena and Stadium and the Moscone Center in San Francisco.

About SMG

Since 1977, SMG has provided management services to more than 220 public assembly facilities worldwide, including arenas, stadiums, theatres and performing arts centers, equestrian facilities, convention, congress and exhibition centers, science centers and a variety of other venues. Across the globe, SMG manages more than 12 million square feet (1.1 million square meters) of exhibition space and over 1.5 million arena and theatre seats. As the recognized global industry leader, SMG provides venue management, sales, marketing, event booking and programming, construction and design consulting, and pre-opening services. SMG also offers food and beverage operations through its concessions and catering company SAVOR, currently serving more than 100 accounts worldwide.