BOCA RATON, FL (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — The city of Boca Raton has agreed to take over ownership and operation of The 4,500-seat Count de Hoernle Amphitheatre in Mizner Park.
According to the Sun Sentinel, the city will assume the shed's remaining $588,000 mortgage as well as paying off as much as $300,000 in debt Centre for the Arts incurred while staging cultural events, including the Festival of the Arts Boca. In exchange, the city will own the venue, worth an estimated 5 million, as well as taking any other cash and assets held by the Centre for the Arts.
The city has budgeted $1 million in the next fiscal year to effect much-needed repairs on the amphitheatre, which had lacked maintenance as the Centre for the Arts was unable to afford the $500,000 a year upkeep tab. An additional $750,000 has been apportioned in next year's budget for programming at the venue. The city has already hired one person to book events, and plans to hire two more to manage the venue, the Sun Sentinel said.
The city also plans to take over the Mizner Park Cultural Arts Center, which includes a black box theatre that was also run by the Centre for the Arts.
The Centre for the Arts had been struggling in recent years, faced with declining donations and funding from the city. The number of events held at the amphitheater had declined in recent years, in part due to a lack of funding, but also because of a dispute with promoter Live Nation, who had been contracted to book events 25 events a year at the venue. Live Nation claimed that it was difficult to sell tickets at the venue as potential customers would often listen to music for free in the adjacent park. Live Nation's contract expired earlier this year. – CelebrityAccess Staff Writers