Tag: Casinos

The Show Goes On

Agua Caliente’s live entertainment venue, The Show, celebrated its 10th anniversary in March. (Courtesy Agua Caliente Resort Casino Spa Rancho Mirage) Agua Caliente maintains strategy of  featuring big stars Agua Caliente Resort Casino Spa Rancho Mirage City: Rancho Mirage, Calif. Venue: The Show at Agua Caliente Resort Casino Spa Rancho Mirage Capacity: 2,700 Agua Caliente Resort Casino Spa Rancho Mirage is celebrating the 10th anniversary of its live music venue, The Show, this year by acknowledging that some traditions are worth keeping, like booking the biggest names. “We’ve ramped it up by going after the A-listers,” said Dan Pferschy, director of entertainment at the venue for six years. “We’ve had Van Morrison, Duran Duran, Steven Tyler, Dolly Parton and Styx.” The Show, which seats 2,100 and has a standing-room capacity of 2,700, started big when it opened in 2009 with Billy Joel, Matchbox Twenty and Martina McBride. Ten years later, Jerry Seinfeld […]

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Changing the Game

Taking in a show at The Show, celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. (Courtesy Agua Caliente Resort Casino Spa Rancho Mirage) As more tribal casinos become destinations for high-level stars and shows are more often expected to generate profits as well as draw gaming customers, VenuesNow spoke with three casinos from different regions about the climate for attracting acts and fans to their live entertainment venues.  We also talked to Tom Cantone, who it’s been said revolutionized the casino business in 1985 when he booked Eddie Murphy at the Sands in Atlantic City, starting the trend of bigger stars performing in casino venues. Cantone, Mohegan Sun vice president of sports and marketing, discusses his 35-year career and how he helped shape what we know today as a casino act.   The Show goes on: Agua Caliente maintains strategy of featuring big stars Cantone means can do: Mohegan Sun exec still helping redefine […]

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Cantone Means Can Do

Tom Cantone received the inaugural Executive of the Year Award from the G2E Global Gaming Conference in 2013. (Courtesy Mohegan Sun) Mohegan Sun exec still helping redefine casino entertainment business When Tom Cantone was recruited to Atlantic City’s Sands Casino Resort in the 1980s, casino entertainment consisted of faded stars and topless girls. Cantone wasn’t satisfied. He wanted to do better.  “I wanted to open the doors to pop culture and get the hottest, latest and greatest to play at the Sands,” Cantone recalled. “Every agent back then shied away from booking their contemporary acts to play a casino. I felt like an army of one out to convince all the agents and managers that there was money to make playing a casino venue who has the same demographic profile as the people who buy their clients’ records, go to their clients’ movies and see their clients’ shows.” Convincing hesitant […]

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Michigan’s FireKeepers Is Cooking

Tim Allen plays Michigan’s FireKeepers’ 2,170-capacity venue, the Event Center. (Courtesy FireKeepers) Venue keeps that Midwestern flavor FireKeepers Casino Hotel City:  Battle Creek, Mich. Venue: The Event Center Capacity: 2,170 The FireKeepers casino Hotel in Battle Creek, Mich., is less than two hours from Detroit and less than three from Chicago, two huge live music markets.  “Tours will play here even if they’ve played one of the big cities,” said Jim Wise, vice president of marketing at FireKeepers. “We mostly draw from a 50-mile radius, so it’s everywhere from here to northern Indiana and western Ohio. Business is good at the Event Center, FireKeepers’ 2,170-capacity live event venue. Hard ticket sales account for 65 percent of the inventory, and most shows sell out. “The facility stands on its own as a cash-ticket venue,” Wise said. “It’s the same thing happening in tribal casinos in Lansing, Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, Jackson and […]

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Seneca Gaming: Two Rooms, Two Approaches

Seneca Allegany Resort’s outdoor amphitheater has a capacity of 6,000. (Courtesy Seneca Gaming) New York venues have their own identities SENECA RESORT CASINOS City: Allegany, N.Y./Niagara Falls, N.Y. Venue: Seneca Allegany Events Center/Seneca Niagara Events Center Capacity: 2,380 inside; 6,000 outside/2,232 inside; 6,000 outside The Seneca Gaming Corp. owns two casino properties in upstate New York with live event venues. They’re both called the Events Center and Seneca Gaming books them both, but don’t get the idea that they’re indentical twins. “Buffalo is the main feed for both properties,” said Christian Printup, Seneca Gaming’s senior executive director of entertainment and special events who books both venues. But Seneca Allegany Resort, a little more than an hour south of Buffalo near the border with Pennsylvania, draws attendees from Erie, Pa., and Ohio, he said. Eighty-five miles away, Seneca Niagara Resort, blocks from the famous falls, pulls from Rochester and Southern Ontario.  […]

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