It was expected to occur: Use of the new amphitheater in the Washington Fairgrounds for various events during the year. It was not constructed just for the Washington Fair entertainment. It’s quite a stage and building.
The Washington Parks Department has been approached by two individuals who said the promotion of a concert would be a joint venture of the Washington Lions Club and Knights of Columbus. It would be a two-night event tentatively set for the May 10-11, 2013, weekend. Bands that perform would be nationally known, but smaller bands. It would be such a big event that the entire fairgrounds would have to be utilized.
In fact, since it is anticipated to be such a big event, the entire fairgrounds would have to be closed off to all but those who attend the concert. Two organizations would be needed to handle an event of this size. One of the many details is security.
The parks department is working on the fees to be charged. The parks director is checking with other communities with amphitheaters to learn about their charges and other details. It will be a costly event to stage so a large attendance is a must.
The success of big-name entertainers at the annual Fair has given an indication of the interest in the area of major events such as the one being planned. When we say area we mean even St. Louis. It is no stretch to say thousands of people from St. Louis city and county attend the Washington Fair. We know some people from St. Louis who come every year and for more than one day. The big-name entertainment was the initial draw, but they found other activities, especially for the children, that have been just as enjoyable.
With adequate publicity, the people will come to a concert featuring name bands. We don’t doubt that for a Washington second. An event of this type here will be a major draw.
The only worry is the weather. That’s a concern for every Washington Fair. Anything planned for the outdoors is a gamble because of the changing weather in Missouri.
There is enormous potential for an event of this kind. It could develop into an annual event. Care will be taken so it will not be a competitor with Fair entertainment. Everything will be passed through the Fair board.
This outdoor stage is the only one of its kind in this immediate area. Because of its cost, it should be utilized for more events than just the Fair. The band concert being planned has appeal.
There will come a day when there will be permanent seating for the amphitheater. It has a promising future. Credit must be given to the Fair board members for their never-ending foresight.