Facelift planned as James Brown Arena braces for crowds

By: Chris Thomas Email
By: Chris Thomas Email

September 16, 2010

AUGUSTA, Ga. -- James Brown Arena is getting a big facelift as sellout acts are heading to Augusta.

Fans are already lined up for some events this month. Kicks 99 is already promoting its annual Guitar Pull event, and people wanting tickets are outside in line.

"I am super excited. We're sitting here waiting until Saturday so we got like 46 hours I think to go." Julia Hammond said. "It is hot. It is hot. But I got me an awning coming, I got me a cooler coming. I got it all coming."

Arena crews are already placing trashcans and rope lines to direct buyers. Nine sellout shows are planned in the coming months.

Now officials are announcing $5 million in renovations. "We just can't close things down to do some of the things we need to do," said Cedric Johnson, chair of the Coliseum Authority.

The money will include renovating restrooms. The arena got national attention on YouTube earlier this year when a band posted video of a locker room pipe spewing water onto the floor after a urinal was flushed.

"That was just a fluke and wasn't a lot of truth. There shouldn't have been anybody in that room. But we've taken care of that and everything else is going fine," Johnson said.

Music fans outside are bringing their own amenities. "I got the whole nine yards. My cooler, my mattress, my snacks. I got people bringing me food," said Jeff Avret.

"We are going to sit out here." Hammond said. "Stand some, dance some, sing some. We're going to do something, but we're going to be here."

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