SBD/May 30, 2013/Facilities

BOK Center Bucks Trend Of Venues Having Declining Revenue After Honeymoon Period

BOK Center yesterday hosted a Paul McCartney performance to celebrate the venue's five-year anniversary, an event that "proved again that Tulsa can attract the world's top performers," according to Zack Stoycoff of the TULSA WORLD. The "iconic 19,199-seat downtown arena has spent nearly five years shattering expectations, selling out shows, attracting major artists and landing in national publications' rankings of the nation's top-performing venues." It held its first show in September '08 and has sold 3.3 million tickets, collected $104.4M in ticket revenue and generated more than $11.1M in sales tax. It has "been consistently recognized as one of the nation's top venues, nominated four straight years for Pollstar magazine's Arena of the Year award and ranked by the publication last month as the 14th most-attended arena so far this year." But BOK Center GM John Bolton said that "most surprising is that attendance has held steady each year between 600,000 and 740,000, bucking a trend among arenas of declining revenue after an initial 'honeymoon period.'" Concerts "tend to be the arena's bread and butter, but other successes have included attracting a WNBA basketball team -- the Tulsa Shock -- and national sporting events such as the NCAA college basketball tournament and the 2013 Bassmaster Classic" (TULSA WORLD, 5/29).
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