Anheuser-Busch and local distributor Harris Wholesale have been denied the naming rights to the new downtown amphitheater. Today, the State Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission denied the request by the City of Raleigh to give the naming rights of the Downtown Raleigh Amphitheater to Bud Light. The proposal would have given the city of Raleigh $300,000 in compensation for the naming rights each year for five years. State law currently prohibits a public venue having a name/sponsor of an alcoholic beverage.
Now what will the City of Raleigh do to find cash for the operating costs of the new amphitheater? Oh, and can we call it New Raleigh Amphitheater now?
Grayson Currin over at the Indy Week has more on the decision.
UPDATE: The City of Raleigh has sent out this release looking for other naming rights.
CITY SEEKS OTHER NAMING RIGHTS OPPORTUNITIES FOR DOWNTOWN AMPHITHEATER
The Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Commission today denied a request for an exemption to allow the City of Raleigh to sell naming rights to the Downtown Amphitheater to Bud Lite.
The City had requested an exemption from state alcoholic beverage advertising regulations to name the venue the Bud Lite Amphitheater. State regulations ban an alcoholic beverage from being part of the name of a public venue.
The City of Raleigh and local Anheuser Busch distributor Harris Wholesaler had drafted a proposal to name the venue the Bud Lite Amphitheater in exchange for $300,000 a year for five years. The City offered that this agreement would cover most of the operating costs of the $2.5 million, 5,000-seat facility that opened June 4.
“This is a very attractive venue that has great appeal to other potential sponsors,” Mayor Charles Meeker said. “The City is actively pursuing other name and title opportunities to defray the costs of operating this facility.”