The announcement that beach concerts are set to return to Atlantic City in 2020 is great news for the state of New Jersey.
The Casino Reinvestment Development Authority and Live Nation Entertainment have agreed a three-year, $1.8 million deal, that includes a three-day event next summer.
The full line-up for the events is yet to be confirmed, with the final details expected to be published once the Governor’s Office rubber-stamps the deal.
Atlantic City Events Help to Drive Tourism in New Jersey
Local tourism officials reported that more than 110 million people traveled into New Jersey in 2018, spending over $44.5 billion while they were in the state.
Governor Phil Murphy has stated that he is hoping to see that figure rise to 150m by 2023, and live events will undoubtedly play a part in driving the growth.
With Atlantic City also offering great casinos, restaurants, shopping and more, experts believe that adding live beach events into the mix makes perfect sense.
“Atlantic City is a terrific market for live entertainment, and it is also a destination market where people will travel from Philadelphia, New York, Washington, D.C., and other surrounding cities, to experience entertainment,” said Geoff Gordon, regional president for Live Nation Philadelphia.
“Last summer, we saw representation from all 50 states and other parts of the world travel to Atlantic City for the two-day (Vans) Warped Tour event.
“We are thrilled to continue the partnership with CRDA to further create opportunities to unite fans with their favourite artists in Atlantic City on an ongoing basis.”
Officials Allay Fears Over Weekend Events
Some local businesses had expressed fears that the three-day event scheduled for 2020 will be staged over the course of a weekend.
Many resorts are operating at full capacity during the summer months and say they are disappointed that they will be denied the opportunity to benefit financially from the events.
Resorts Casino Hotel President/CEO, Mark Giannantonio, lodged a strong objection to the 2020 three-day event.
“I’ve said for years that beach concerts should be put midweek when we really need the business, not when we’re 100% occupied,” Giannantonio said.
His concerns have been addressed to a certain degree, with officials confirming that the events in the subsequent two years will be limited on the days they can take place.
Atlantic City’s mayor, Marty Small Sr, gave his support to the deal, although he has confirmed he will be lobbying for a more diverse range of music events to be staged over the next three years.
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As with any tourism destination, the impact the industry has on local citizens is always high on the list of issues for officials to consider.
Many local residents rely on the tourism sector for their household income, with thousands of people enjoyed by businesses such as casinos, hotels and restaurants.
The beach events will create an income boost at just the right time, particularly for those who work in areas that may traditionally slow down during the summer months.
Joe LaSala, president of the Atlantic City Stagehands, said: “These concerts really provide much-needed income for a lot of people that live in Atlantic City and Atlantic County. The income and wages that are made from these are just instrumental. I can’t express how important it is.”
The deputy commissioner of the state Department of Community Affairs, Rob Long, believes the deal to allow beach events will help Atlantic City prosper in the future.
He said: “It is an entertainment destination, so whenever we can support events that help that part of the city’s economy, that translates into benefits for the residents, helps the city with its finances — it’s all inter-related.”