Music Center off the market

August 15, 2007
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                              Wireless Music CenterNoblesville's Verizon Wireless Music Center is no longer for sale and will host a full lineup of shows in 2008, the facility's general manager, Steve Finkel, said this afternoon. Many had expected the 2007 season would be the swan song for the popular amphitheater after venue owner Live Nation put the 203-acre property up for sale in December 2006. But as of June, no acceptable offers had been received, and several local brokers told IBJ that the unofficial asking price of more than $40 million was outrageous. Live Nation had sought to capitalize on the rising value of the venue's land, which once was remote farmland but is now surrounded by development. What do you think?

  • Forget Verizon and use Victory Field as the new outdoor concert venue in Indy. The show there a couple of weeks ago was awesome. It's downtown and is easy to get to without all of the I69 traffic issues and the show sounded great.
  • ...or redevelop the old Bush Stadium on 16th St. for the same purpose. Rental/lease income for Indy Parks (the owner), ticket tax revenue for the city, and a cool re-use for a facility in the middle of the Bio-Crossroads redevelopment area. Plus a trail connection to the White River Trail.
  • I'm with CDC. It would make for a great venue and could kick start a little more funding for a few upgrades on the White River Trail, which could take it straight to the downtown canal.
  • This is GREAT!!! Verizon is the best place to see shows in the area!
  • Agree! This is great news! Once all of this road work is completed up here this is going to be hands down the best entertainment complex in the midwest if not the United States! There will finally be some hotels, some good eats and great roads to give adequate access to the venue!
    This news ROCKS!!!
    The downtown comments are good as well but why get rid of VWMC when you can come out and tailgate, relax on the grass and enjoy a entire evening of world class entertainers at a excellent establishment!!
  • I couldn't care less.

    Driving to the boondocks for has-been performers ain't my cup of tea. The only good acts they get there come through on weeknights. Who wants to travel 45 minutes each way, wait in traffic and pay through the nose for parking and beer for that?

    Deer Creek's owners were crazy to think they could get that much for the land, but it really could be better used.

    I love the idea of a bigger Downtown venue. The Lawn is a great place to see shows, and I've heard the Counting Crows show at Victory Field as a good one, too.

    When Deer Creek was built, Indy didn't have much to offer Downtown. That's changed. Let's roll with it.
  • Yeah for Live Nation.....Thank you for keeping a great venue outside of the loop. If you have never been to Verizon Wireless Music Center for a concert you really are missing something. Great Venue!! Glad to see it off the market. I live just minutes away so I'm a little biased
  • I have been downtown for shows and ballgames. The traffic is worse downtown when you are trying to get home from an big event then it is at Deer Creek. When the roads are all finished in time for the 2008 concert season, traffic will not be an issue at the Music center. I heard that the show at the Vic was not that good. Plus downtown is not the safest area in the state.

    Nothing rocks like Deer Creek. You can have downtown.
  • Traffic downtown is only a problem for certain suburbanites who know just one way in and out and are afraid to venture from it.

    Jon, you can keep your Def Leppard concerts and Applebee's dinners up in Fishers.
  • Yawn. No kidding it's off the market, there was no way they were going to get what they were asking for it.

    I personally hate going up to it. I may go to one or two shows a year up there. Give me a nice night at Radio Radio any night. Chances are if you don't like the bands playing that night going in, you'll like at least one of them on your way out. If I got to choose where my favorite bigger bands play, I'll take Music Mill or the Lawn at White River, please.
  • That's the best news I've heard all year!!! I love Deer Creek!!! I go every year at least 2~3 times and one of those times is to camp out all weekend and watch Dave for back to back shows. I was really down when I heard it was put on the market, but personally, I knew this wouldn't be the last year to see a concert there...not for +40 million Then, you have to develope the land (which needs a lot of equipment work to build on, build, build some more, and yada yada yada. Someone would have some serious $$$$$ in that before they ever saw any return. That area has developed 10 fold since Deer Creek was built. With all the new developement and upcoming developement, VWMC will be the center of entertainment in the Midwest!!! Can't wait to see what good eats open up there!!!
  • Why has the road constrution for Verizon taken so long. I don't think enought thought was put into the plan for this site years ago. Look at Walt Disney world florida, many interstate lanes exit right off into the parking lot. I do attend events at verizon but don't like the wait, I have been to other states that there venues has been downtown and they have it figured out. EASY IN EASY OUT we don't need to re invent the wheel, look at what is around us that works. I think more people would support and attend events if it was easy in and out. Yes hotels and resturant is a big plus to these type of venues.
  • Well, I'm glad the venue will remain! You know, it's got attract concert goers from other locales than just Indy. When I was younger, my family would drive from Muncie to attend concerts.

    Hopefully, access to and from VWMC will be improved after area development has been completed. Still, I can't imagine that mall shoppers will enjoy wading through concert traffic.
  • It is seriously the best thing for the owners. They know they can get that price if they just wait, and they want TOP dollar for it. Once the mall is completed and all the new roads ready the land will be worth even more. This venue will get sold sooner or later. It's nice to see we have at least one more year though.
  • I will admit, I had some good times at VWMC... But that's in the past. The place is so overbloated and full of itself, that the reason I enjoyed attending shows there is gone. Yeah, okay, so the rich yuppies or whatever they are called these days, who have contributed heavily to the problem of urban sprawl have a close venue.

    Downtown is just fine for a venue location. I haven't been to the Lawn for a show yet, but I have seen it, and it loks like a nice venue. Bush stadium would be a nifty idea, and I'm sure Victory Field works too.

    For those of you who have not been paying attention to the live music scene, it's dying. People these days would rather sit in their comfy chair listening to their mp3s or watching videos on YouTube. Large venues like VWMC are honestly outdated, (not to mention way-overpriced) other than the festival type shows, and those, they always have to cut-off alcohol sales because the crowd gets too rowdy. Sod anyone?

    I can't say I'll be sad to see VWMC go, or say I'm happy it's staying another year, but unless I can see a show for free there, I'd rather not bother to venture out to the boondocks to see a show, then be stuck in traffic for 2 hours trying to get home afterwards.

    On a side note... Downtown is safe... unless you're daft enough to go exploring alleys off the beaten-path by yourself.
  • Indiana Jones, Muncie and Anderson are closer to Deer Creek than a lot of the Indy metro area (south and west). Airport to Deer Creek is more than 40 miles.

    Jon, the last time I was at the place, it took well more than an hour to get to the parking lot exit. It never takes me that long to get all the way home from a Colts game or race in Speedway where there are 3-10 times as many people. But then, I live inside the actual city.
  • Why did this turn into a pro/anti vwmc thread? Anyone want to discuss the actual story (see my comment above)?
  • I could care less whether it stays or goes. It appeals to particular market-segment. A segment that I am not a part of.

    I'd much rather attend several more-intimate, quality venues downtown that draw cutting-edge national acts, than drive to VWMC to see the same mega-tours every summer.
  • My point was, there are others beside Indy residents who have attended VWMC/Deer Creek shows over the years.

    Let's consider the reasons the developers selected a locale that far away from Indy.... I'd think that, back then, they'd have been able to purchase land a bit north of the Marsh corporate offices, or the east side of that portion of I-69, if proximity to the capitol city would've been that important.
  • WGAF? I hate that place. keep the maragriteville/jon bon jovi/little pink houses minivan set up there.


  • How many can VWMC hold?
    How many does victory field hold?
    How many can fit on The Lawn?
    The Lawn and Victory Field are both excellent venues, but lack capacity. The problem with Indy is that Market Square Arena has not been relplaced. There is no viable facility to hold a large concert. The Fieldhouse is not acceptable as a concert venue.
    One would think that this type of a facility would be included in the Mayor's Cultural Development Initiative (not the cultural trail). At least I think music concerts are considered cultural . . . however with the odd art/sculpture/electronic signage that is now being implemented into the streetscape of Indianapolis I am not sure what is cultural anymore.
  • Hey Lilli - we sold off HamCo and Deer Creek about 200 years ago.


  • Victory Field seats about 20,000 in actual seats, far more than VWMC, and parking and access and traffic aren't issues. Bush Stadium is a little smaller, and parking may be a bit of an issue.
  • CDC Guy

    Deer Creek holds 25,000.

    And in 2006, out of 100 venues like Deer Creek, it was 5th in the nation in ticket sales. Once they get the roads done around the venue, traffic will not be a problem. Instead of 2 lane roads coming in and out of Deer Creek, we will have 4 and 6 lane roads.
  • VWMC's capacity may be 25,000 but that's made up of relatively few actual seats and room for 10-20,000 on the lawn. The Vic has the opposite, lots of actual seats and room for a couple thousand on the lawns beyond the fences.

    We don't have to build freeway lanes or roads to improve access to the Vic, or a mall, restaurants, offices, shops, or hotels nearby. They're already there.
  • Lili --

    As CDC guy said, Deer Creek holds ~25,000 (wikipedia says 6k pavilion, 18k lawn)

    Victory Field doesn't hold 20k, it holds 15,500 (12,500 in actual seats, plus 1k in bleachers and 2k on the lawn areas).

    The Lawn holds about 5,000.

    IMO, The Lawn is by far the best outdoor venue in Indy. I'm begrudgingly heading to Deer Creek tonight for only the third time in 7 years, partly because my wife has never seen Dave Matthews Band, but mostly because I want to see Umphrey's McGee. God I hate getting out and driving home from Deer Creek....
  • Sheesh, there sure are a lot of pansies around here. Bad traffic, so what? How many times per year does the average person attend a Deer Creek show, 1 maybe 2 times? Small price to pay to have access to a whole additional segment of entertainment. Bottom line is, if Deer Creek were not in operation, acts like Dave Matthews, Rush, Tom Petty, Roger Waters, Jimmy Buffet, Phish, Crosby Stills Nash and Young, Nine Inch Nails, etc. that have visited town in the recent past would have skipped Indy all together. You can talk about Victory Field, but the sound there sucks (duh, it was built for baseball, not music), you can talk about the Lawn which is a nice venue, but it just can't handle the biggest shows. Conseco is really the only other viable option, but again it was built for basketball, not music, and its indoors. Deer Creek offers an experience no other venue in Indy can, and it brings acts to Indy that otherwise would skip town entirely. It is a valuable asset to the city, and it would be a big blow if we didn't have it!

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