The City of Rochester is seeking proposals for Party in the Park, the Thursday night summer concert series.
The Springut Group has been producing the event the last couple years, starting with the summer of 2011 when the city began charging $2 admission. That summer saw a 40 percent drop in attendance, which officials attributed to weather. An average of 3,200 people attended the 10 concerts in 2011. Attendance in 2012 rebounded somewhat, with 3,700 per concert.
I think it’s time for the city to admit the venue is a problem. It’s a parking lot surrounding by a fence and lined with portable toilets. The “Party in the Parking Lots” don’t have the same feel as the previous venues of High Falls and Manhattan Square Park.
The city claims there simply isn’t a suitable venue for outdoor concerts downtown. An outdoor space that can accommodate 10,000-15,000 people is on the city’s wishlist. The city claims Manhattan Square Park and High Falls are too small.
Columbus, Ohio tore down its downtown mall and created a concert space. But while Rochester’s Midtown site will have a center courtyard, it won’t be on the same scale. Even if Rochester wanted to make the rest of the Midtown site green, I’ve been told by a city official the remaining space is too small. (There’s the tower and Windstream there already.)
I’d like to see the city overhaul Manhattan Square Park. Who even uses it anymore? It seems the city has been working on redesigning it forever. The old restaurant is supposed to open as park lodge space. The Fringe Fest got 6,000 people in the park and on Court St. for Bandaloop. Maybe Court St. can be closed off for a block on Party in the Park nights.
Here’s what the city is looking for from 2013 Party in the Park proposals:
The City is interested in ways to increase attendance and generate excitement for the Party in the Park series. Unique ideas such as innovative marketing/promotion ideas, sponsorship partner proposals, site setup, seating areas, and other suggestions are welcome as part of all proposals.
What are your ideas?
Update: I’ve been told Springut took over in 2009. Also, Sahlen’s Stadium would love to have the concerts, according to email I received from management. And I forgot to mention Gibbs St., which I think should be permanently closed to traffic.
Links of the Day:
- Rochester’s suburbs want to be more bicycle-friendly. They’ve also decided sidewalks are a good thing.
- Wilmorite has unloaded another downtown Sibley’s building, this one in Syracuse. Plans call for retail and housing.
- Oswego is banning all felons and sex offenders from driving cabs. When was the last time you heard of a cab driver hurting a customer?
- A think tank says the decline of unions has meant a decline in wages.
- After a $34 million renovation, the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool is full of algae.