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Our commitment: Moncton is the Maritimes' sports and entertainment centre

Editor
Times and Transcript

Our commitment: Moncton is the Maritimes' sports and entertainment centre

Recently there has been media coverage expressing concern about the prospects for major concerts and events in Moncton and I appreciate this opportunity to provide some perspective and context regarding those concerns.

We are indeed proud of the legacy the late Ian Fowler has left behind. A legacy that includes not only bringing spectacular entertainment to Moncton, but he also left a team of people who are dedicated to work energetically and diligently to attract major events and concerts to the city. 

Since Ian’s passing in 2011, the City’s events team landed a number of high profile events to their credit, and these continue to put Moncton on the map:

  1. A CFL game in 2013;
  2. 2012 Canadian Figure Skating Championships;
  3. 2013 Canadian Track & Field Trials;
  4. 2012 Nickelback and Springsteen concerts at Magnetic Hill;
  5. FIFA U20 Women’s World Cup Canada 2014;
  6. 2014 Canadian Track and Field Championships;
  7. 2013 Canadian Transplant Games;
  8. FIFA Women’s World Cup Canada 2015; and,
  9. Les Jeux de la Francophonie Canadienne in 2017 in partnership with UdeM and the City of Dieppe.

National and international sports events take time to prepare and secure as organizing bodies plan their event schedules years ahead. We have been very fortunate to have hosted a variety of events from football, curling and skating, to track and field and soccer. We remain confident in our ability to attract and host such events and continue to seek opportunities to put our skills as a community into action.

All these significant achievements happened as a result of teamwork and clearly show that the City of Moncton has been aggressive and successful in attracting events. Our goal is to seek and seize opportunities not only to strengthen our entertainment reputation but also to help generate important economic impact in our community.

On the concert front, we continually engage promoters through the efforts of the Mayor and City Council, the City Manager and the events team.  We continue to position Moncton as a venue to promoters and our concert partners continue to assure us they see the value in our quality venues and are ever conscious of acts that would fit in Moncton’s various sites.

Our city is fortunate to have three venues that can accommodate various shows: the Coliseum, Stade Moncton Stadium and the Magnetic Hill Concert Site in addition to the Wesleyan Church Celebration Centre, the Capitol Theatre and the Théâtre l’Escaouette operated by other organizations.  As we move another step closer to a new Downtown Centre, Moncton will boast another quality venue, inside and out. As for Stade Moncton Stadium, both upcoming international soccer tournaments will take up much of the prime time for concerts this year and next and while the window of opportunity in the short term is limited, the stadium will host concerts suited to its capacity given the great relationships we have with UdeM, the Stadium Management Committee chaired by former Mayor Lorne Mitton and major concert promoters.

The Magnetic Hill Concert Site remains our primary large concert venue and we are bringing forward a new strategy to Council that should result in future major shows at that location.  This strategy will present City Council with alternatives to the way we do business.  We will be making recommendations in relation to potential changes to concert and event governance, organizational structures and new financial parameters regarding future opportunities at Magnetic Hill as well as Stade Moncton Stadium, the Coliseum and at other City-owned venues.

While we share the community’s disappointment that we have not yet secured a show at Magnetic Hill since the two concerts we landed in 2012, we are very confident that the tide will indeed soon change. The City of Moncton is committed to bringing great events and concerts to our residents and our visitors and we are working hard to making that happen.

This city has a strong entrepreneurial spirit and a can-do attitude. As we honour our past and the people who have shaped our community, we will also learn from our successes and our failures and work together to strengthen Moncton’s reputation as the Maritimes' leading sports and entertainment centre.

Jacques Dubé, City Manager