Lights Out At Mable House

The Mable House Barnes Amphitheatre in Mableton, Ga., will stay mostly dark this summer following a round of county budget cuts that slashed funding for the 2,400-capacity venue’s summer concert series.

The county-owned and -operated amphitheatre, which was built for more than $7 million in 2003, has reportedly failed to cover expenses for many years, despite a number of well-attended concerts including The B-52’s and B.B. King in 2009.

Local commissioners decided to cut more than $350,000 from the shed’s budget for fiscal 2011 to help close the county’s $32 million budget gap, according to the Marietta Daily Journal.

Commissioner Woody Thompson told the paper that the cuts were necessary, as the Mable House was not “designed to make any revenue.”

“It was a wash to begin with,” he said. “Even though we lost less money last year than we ever have, it’s one of those items if you have consistent figures of loss, you have to make adjustments.”

The Cobb County parks department will still operate the facility on a rental-only basis for the summer, the Daily Journal said, and two events have been booked including Foghat July 16 and a jazz festival in September.