Bridgestone Arena, home of the National Hockey League’s Nashville Predators, was named 2014 Arena of the Year by Pollstar Magazine on Saturday night during the Pollstar Live! Concert Industry Awards Ceremony at Ryman Auditorium. This is the first time that Bridgestone Arena has taken home top venue honors after being nominated 11 times, including receiving nominations in each of the past eight years.
“It is the mission of every employee at Bridgestone Arena to ensure that a world-class experience is delivered to every guest, partner, performer and player that walks through our doors,” Bridgestone Arena and Nashville Predators COO Sean Henry said. “Receiving acknowledgement as Arena of the Year is both exciting and humbling and is a testament to our commitment to be at the forefront of this industry and our mission to be the ‘number one sports and entertainment venue in the United States.’ We thank our partners in the Mayor’s office, Metro Council and the Sports Authority and the performers, promoters, agents and managers who bring quality entertainment to Nashville for sharing our vision and helping us fulfill this mission.”
Pollstar Magazine focuses primarily on the concert industry and also reports on news regarding sports and entertainment. The nominating committee is comprised of industry leaders in all facets of the entertainment business, including arena managers, artists, artist managers, agents and promoters from across the country and abroad. The winner of this prestigious award is determined by the international readership of Pollstar.
2014 Bridgestone Arena Highlights:
• Twenty-one sold out Nashville Predators games, including 17,401 in attendance on Dec. 30 vs. St. Louis, the largest crowd in the history of Nashville Predators hockey
• Host to the 2014 47th Annual CMA Awards
• Host to the 2014 CMT Music Awards
• Bridgestone Arena played host to the following stars, acts and more over the course of 2014:
o Ringling Bros. Barnum and Bailey Circus (seven shows)
o Keith Urban
o Kings of Leon
o Brad Paisley
o Imagine Dragons
o Demi Lovato
o Bruce Springsteen
o WWE Smackdown
o WWE Night of Champions
o Monster Jam
o George Strait
o Arcade Fire
o Keith Urban’s We’re All for the Hall
o Sesame Street Live
o Miley Cyrus
o Katy Perry
o Professional Bull Riders
o Billy Joel
o KISS and Def Leppard
o A Day to Remember
o Ed Sheeran
o Tom Petty and the Hearbreakers
o Disney on Ice: Frozen (10 shows)
o Casting Crowns
o Motley Crue
o The Black Keys
o Marvel Universe Live
o Justin Timberlake
o Paul McCartney
o James Taylor
o Kelly Clarkson’s Miracle on Broadway
o Bassnectar 360
o CMA Country Christmas
Over the course of 2014, Bridgestone Arena underwent a Over the course of 2014, Bridgestone Arena underwent a wave of renovations, beginning early in the year on Jan. 9 when it opened the Nissan SoBro entrance at the corner of Fifth Avenue and Demonbreun, uniting the arena with the Music City Center and the new businesses in Nashville’s booming SoBro (south of Broadway) district. Additional renovations include the installation of the new HVAC system, new carpet in several levels, exterior LED boards, free WiFi arena-wide and the opening of Tavern ’96, Bridgestone Arena’s first full-time restaurant.
At the start of the Nashville Predators season on Oct. 9, Bridgestone Arena debuted several additional renovations that took place during the summer months. The arena opened a new 8,000 square foot Nashville Predators Team Store on the Fifth Avenue side of the building, offering an unprecedented selection of merchandise. The American Born Moonshine Bar, Club Tropicana Bar and Grille, Mocking Bird Distillery’s Tito’s Handmade Vodka and The Barrel House joined an already expansive list of food and drink options open to patrons during events. On top of the new options, The Patron Platinum Club underwent renovations that included new furniture, lighting and an enhanced menu. Bridgestone Arena also opened a new Performer’s Level club, the Lexus Lounge, which offers luxurious amenities such as personal concierge service, plush seating, special-themed buffets and a full bar to members at both hockey games and arena events.
Stretching into 2015, Bridgestone Arena continues to undergo renovations in an effort to improve patrons’ experiences during their visits. This summer, all of the seats in the Arena’s lower bowl will be replaced, followed by the replacing of the seats in the club level and upper bowl in the summer of 2016.
The NHL’s Nashville Predators have been the primary tenant of Bridgestone Arena since 1998 – just two years after the venue opened its doors for its first concert. On Oct. 17, 2014, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman visited Bridgestone Arena to announce that the arena, the Predators and the city of Nashville had been named hosts of the 2016 NHL All-Star Game and festivities that will take place on Jan. 30 and 31, 2016. The awarding of the NHL All-Star Game comes on the heels of the announcement in October 2013 with the Southeastern Conference that Bridgestone Arena would be the home of 12 consecutive SEC Basketball Championships, including the 2015 SEC Tournament in March.
Serving as the home for numerous national and international events, Bridgestone Arena has the distinction of being one of the busiest venues in the United States over the past decade and a half. Bridgestone Arena was named the sixth-busiest building in the U.S. by Pollstar Magazine in 2010, 2011 and 2013 and was named the Academy of Country Music’s Large Capacity Venue of the Year in March of 2014. Bridgestone Arena’s Senior Vice President of Booking David Kells has also recently received recognition; he received his third consecutive Pollstar Facility Executive of the Year nomination in November, weeks after being named IEBA’s Venue Executive of the Year.
To receive regular updates on upcoming events at Bridgestone Arena go to Bridgestonearena.com. For more information on the Nashville Predators, game schedule and ticket availability, please visit Nashvillepredators.com.