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VENUE UPDATES: New England Patriots Push Naming Rights To New Heights … And Much More!

Foxboro, Massachusetts-AP — What's in a name? For the New England Patriots the answer is: a lot of money.

Practically every strip of asphalt and concrete at the team's new stadium — C-M-G-I Field — is named for businesses that have bought naming rights.

Football fans park at the Taurus New England Ford Dealership parking lot.

They enter through gates named for FleetBoston Financial or Internet auction firm u-Bid.

They kick back in the Fidelity Investments luxury clubhouse.

The team won't say how much it got for the naming rights. But it appears to have broken some new ground in Foxboro.

An attorney who specializes in sports deals tells the Boston Globe he's never heard of selling naming rights for a parking lot.

The team wanted to call the clubhouse access road Fidelity Way-dot-com. But local officials put the kibosh on that.

New Venue Launches Outdoor Concert Series

The newly built BlackRock Center for the Arts in Germantown, Maryland is staging its very first concerts for its outdoor concert series, which runs July 10 – August 31. It will stage its grand opening in October.

"The concert series is the first of many great arts experiences that BlackRock will bring to Montgomery County and the surrounding community in the coming months," said Interim General Manager Marilyn Balcombe.

The summer concerts will feature a wide variety of artists including folk rock, big band salsa, blues, classics, Celtic, country and West African drums.

"With this diverse group of musicians, there will be something that appeals to everyone," said Balcombe.

The BlackRock Center for the Arts, a 34,000 square foot facility, will include theaters for the performing arts, an exhibition gallery, a children's art and activity studio, outdoor performance space and educational studios for art, dance, music and literature.

Outdoor Concert Series

July 10 — The Kennedys

July 13 –Orquesta La Romana

July 17 — Lox and Vodka

July 20 — Cathy Ponton King

July 24 — Mystic Warriors

July 27 — The Hickory Project

July 31 — Monumental Brass

August 3 –GrooveLily

August 7 — Hesperus

August 10 — Al Petteway and Amy White

August 14 — Reverb

August 17 — Soul in Motion Players

August 21 –MoonFire

August 24 — Last Train Home

August 28 — Squeeze Bayou

August 31 — Djimo Kouyate & The Manding Griot Ensemble

2 Dozen Injured in Concert Stampede

WASHINGTON (AP) — More than two dozen people were injured — most of them slightly — in a mosh pit stampede while rapper Eminem was performing Saturday night at RFK Stadium, officials said.

One man suffered a heart attack during the melee and was taken to a local hospital, District of Columbia fire spokesman Alan Etter said. His condition was unavailable.

Four others were taken to area hospitals with injuries not considered to be life-threatening, he said. The rest were treated at the scene for less serious injuries.

"There were fights and a lot of pushing and shoving," said Brent Turner, 17, of Damascus, Md., who said he witnessed the disturbance.

The two-day concert sponsored by a Maryland radio station included a number of acts on several stages. Eminem resumed his performance after a brief delay, while police calmed the crowd, and the concert was to continue Sunday as planned.

Brookhaven Amphitheatre Undergoes Improvements, Kicks Off Season May 24

Brookhaven Amphitheatre in Farmingdale, NY is expected to sign a 10-year deal with the Morey Organization in Garden City, NY, which will book shows and invest $1 million in venue improvements. The Morey Organization, which owns three radio stations and the Vanderbilt Entertainment Night Club, had a trial run at the amphitheater last year and turned an $8,000 profit for the town. According to John Caracciolo, president of Morey Organization, $400,000 has already been invested in improvements to the sewage system, new bathrooms, sound and lighting systems and 200 new permanent seats, with 500 more to be added at the end of this season.

Brookhaven Supervisor John Jay LaValle told Suffolk Life Newspaper, "It will be to their benefit to make these improvements early in the agreement so they will see the benefits," noting that he has "been a proponent" of bringing in Morey Organization. "They have the ability, track record and expertise to promote this facility and to make it work. They are committed to doing $1 million in capital improvements, and in addition, Brookhaven at the very least will be matching that money over 10 years."

"We have produced over 350 shows in the last five years, and in Brookhaven we will do 23 shows for the summer 2002 season," Caracciolo said, who added that the town will have the right to schedule eight events. "This is a unique partnership between the town and private industry … and we will be working very hard to bring big sponsorships and to produce shows at a more professional level, because our goal is to keep ticket prices at a cost not to exceed $20 each over the 10-year period."

Previously, the amphitheater turned no profits for the town, but that will now change. The town will receive a $7, 500 flat fee for every event Morey stages, another $10,000 security fee pershow, and the balance of $1 million in improvements. Caracciolo said he will also be working with the town to help them produce their shows on a more professional level. In addition, the town will receive percentages from the Morey-run concessions as well as a percentage of sponsorships.

"We do everything and do not sublet anything out, and we're bringing the entire facility up to code," Caracciolo said.

Kicking off its season May 24, bookings include The Monkees, appearing with Barry Williams of the Brady Bunch; KC and the Sunshine Band; Toto; Leon Russell and Edgar Winter with special guest King Norris featuring Fred Norris of the Howard Stern Show; Gin Blossoms; Glenn Miller Orchestra; Long Island Philharmonic; Americana Blues Festival and Rock Fest 2002 featuring Judas Priest, Warrant, Ratt, LA Guns, Dokken and Firehouse.

The amphitheater expects to have permanent seating for a 5,000 capacity.

Adelphia Coliseum Could Face Naming Rights Change

Adelphia Business Solutions Inc could lose its naming rights for Nashville's Adelphia Coliseum if it doesn't make good on an overdue payment on the $2 million a year deal.

A motion was filed by a group of entities — Tennessee Football, parent company of Tennessee Titans, Cumberland Stadium, Tennessee Football, Cumberland Promotion Enterprises and Dream Suites — to force the telecommunications firm to make its $500,000 quarterly payment due May 15 or assure it will make the payment. If unable, the above companies want the option to remarket the naming rights.

Adelphia Business Solutions filed for Chapter 11-bankruptcy protection in March. It is now in post-petition day default, the filing says.

Blue Cross Arena Increases Ticket Surcharge

The cost of a ticket for events at the city-owned Blue Cross Arena at the Community War Memorial in Rochester, NY will increase by 25 cents in July, according to the Democrat & Chronicle.

SMG, which manages the facility, said it was losing too much money and wanted to rework its financial agreement. The city will use the extra money to help SMG.

Now, a ticket costing $5 and up will include a total $1.25 ticket surcharge; any ticket less than $5 will include a 25-cent surcharge. Previously, less expansive tickets had no surcharge.

In addition, the city also will pay $150,000 more a year in utility costs, reducing SMG's cost to about $300,000. Parking lot operations will also be turned over to SMG, who will be free to set their own parking fees.

Don Law Faces Opposition Over Contract Extension For FleetBoston Pavilion Site

Clear Channel Entertainment's Don Law and Massachusetts environmental officials are butting heads about Law wanting to keep his FleetBoston Pavilion on South Boston's waterfront. Law is seeking an extension on his five-year state permit, which ends in 2004, to continue using the Wharf 8 site for his summer concert series. The problem is that environmental officials and others want to use the site to help preserve the city's diminishing maritime industry. Under state and city policies, Wharf 8 is designated for maritime use. Boston Mayor Thomas Menino however, supports an extension.

To combat the dissention, parent company Clear Channel Communications has offered to spend $50,000 a year on a program to familiarize schoolchildren with the Boston Harbor Islands.

Menino spokesman Peter Nagle told the Boston Globe that the city is in favor of the 5,000-seat tented pavilion because "at present nobody's approached the city on an appropriate maritime use for the site."

Another proponent of the pavilion is the Boston Redevelopment Authority, which owns the site. Spokeswoman Meredith Baumann told the paper that the pavilion is "consistent with our waterfront planning effort." Law's DLC Corp. pays $250,000 a year to lease the wharf

But the state has the last word on any extension since only it can issue a permit and it is holding its ground.

Officials at the State Department of Environmental Protection say the proposed Harbor Islands educational program won't affect their decision, reports the Globe. Department spokesman, Edmund J. Coletta Jr., said, "Obviously that doesn't change the perspective we see here. The original decision, where we asked them to look at alternative sites, still stands."

In the meantime, the state is looking for someone in the maritime industry to take over the space.