May 1, 2007
AIKEN, S.C.---The new Convocation Center at USC Aiken opened tonight for its first concert. The $21 million facility seats over four thousand people, and tonight it was a full house.
Lines were wrapped around the building, and there was plenty of security on hand. But the excited patrons didn't mind at all getting patted down.
A lot of work went into getting the facility ready, but event planners say it was all worth it.
"We're very proud," said Mike Thomas, the Convocation Center's director of sponsorship. "We're just proud to be in Aiken and give Aiken a chance to shine with our new arena."
That should be no problem.
Thomas says that the success of the operation will lie in its headliners...and with big names and a variety of events coming to this summer, revenues are expected to soar.
"Our job at global spectrum is to book a certain number of shows and different genres and whatever you'd call it, and religious shows, family shows, country shows and ..very excited to diverse building."
Inside the crowd went wild, waiting in anticipation of one of the featured bands, Papa Roach. Many who came to the concert say they are glad there's an new place for quality events in Aiken and it's been long overdue.
"It brings a lot of people to Aiken, and, you know, Aiken is a nice place," said Larkin White. "It needs a lot of people."
"Great...lot of events coming up," said another patron, Walter.
"I'm excited," said Paul Kromer. "This is going to be a great time."
You can expect more sold out events as well. We're told that just in the month of May, there will be Kenny Rogers and Omarion, and the Aiken Blues festival is coming in the month of June.
For tickets to Convocation Center events, click here.