New Oshkosh concert venue will not open this summer

Published: Jun. 15, 2021 at 5:30 AM CDT|Updated: Jun. 15, 2021 at 9:56 PM CDT
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OSHKOSH, Wis. (WBAY) - An Oshkosh concert venue will not open as planned this summer.

Ford Park Live announced Monday that organizers are dealing with “unforeseen and ongoing delays regarding venue operations.”

“Ford Park Live will be unable to open this summer as originally planned,” reads a statement from the promoter.

The Billy Strings concert scheduled for June 18 and 19 has been moved to Leach Amphitheater. All previously purchased tickets will be honored at the new location at 303 Ceape Avenue. CLICK HERE for more information on tickets.

Oshkosh Parks Director Ray Maurer said, “What they told us is that Billy Strings has got a good following. I believe he’s coming from the California area. A number of his fans had their flights booked and hotels booked and he wanted to keep his concert going if we could make it happen and we were able to do that.”

The promoter declined a request for an interview with Action 2 News Tuesday afternoon.

City officials tell us, normally, they require a 60 day notice to host such an event.

“It kind of takes all of us to work together to try to pull something off this quickly, but it’s worth it. These are groups that come into our community and we welcome that and we look forward to having them here,” added Kathy Snell, Oshkosh Special Events Coordinator.

Ford Park Live was set to be the new concert venue in Oshkosh this summer after Hypervibe, the company in charge of Rock USA and Country USA, went bankrupt.

Promoter Danny Wimmer Presents took over the 200-acre Ford Festival Park and renamed it Ford Park Live.

“We look forward to putting down roots there and hopefully being there for a long, long time and being an incredible long-term live event destination for the community,” said DWP’s President of Live Entertainment Joe Litvag.

The promoter said the company planned to create new festivals for 2022. It’s unclear if the delay will impact those plans.

The two concerts this weekend will come right after the opening of Waterfest, for the first time in a year on Thursday night. This is expected to bring thousands to the city’s downtown district over a period of three days.

Maurer added, “Early on due to COVID they were going to limit to three to four thousand people out at those grounds. The Leach can accommodate 7,500 people, so right now we’re being told if they have 2,500 or three thousand people is what they’re expecting tops, which for us is a good Waterfest night on a Thursday for us.”

The rental fee for the Leach Amphitheater will cost the promoter $5,000 per night.

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