Pacific Shed Bounces Back

Southern California’s Pacific Amphitheatre concluded its Orange County Fair season with a nice rebound after losing $1.3 million over the last six seasons.

Its 23-concert season recently ended showing a profit of $659,606 thanks to some strategic moves on the part of fair officials.

Orange County Fair CEO Steve Beazley changed the season’s format this year, eliminating opening acts for a savings of $800,000, passing on blockbuster headliners, cutting the freebies and lowering ticket prices, according to the Orange County Register.

Total paid attendance at the 8,000-seat Pacific Amphitheatre rose to 133,561 from just more than 100,000 last year, for shows ranging from Three Dog Night, with an average ticket price of just $4.88, to Duran Duran at $46 per ticket. With shorter shows, patrons had more time to spend cash at the fair’s other attractions like Lucha Libre wrestling.

While Beazley told the Register “we hit all our targets,” the paper reports that 10 of 23 shows still lost money.

However, that was more than made up with successes like Duran Duran, Black Eyed Peas and the Pat Benatar / Blondie co-bill (which ranked with Judas Priest and the Steve Miller Band among top beer-sellers).

In Disneyland’s home county, a night of Disney music flopped, losing $94,000.