Covelli Centre Posts Most Profitable Quarter Ever

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio -- The city's Covelli Centre reported its most profitable quarter to date, earning nearly $400,000 for the three-month period ended March 31, according to financial statements released by the city this morning.

The Covelli Centre reported total net income for the quarter at $382,016, nearly $4,000 above its projected income of $378,410.

"It was our best quarter ever," says Eric Ryan, executive director of the Covelli Centre and president of J.A.C. Management Group LLC. "We're trending to have a tremendous year."

In a cover letter attached with the arena's financials, Ryan reports that the 5.5% city-imposed admissions tax raised an extra $104,217 for the three-month period. These revenues are paid directly to the city.

The arena hosted 36 events during the first quarter, including the sold-out performance of Sir Elton John. It was John's second performance in less than four years at the venue.

Other shows included a sold-out Darius Rucker concert, seven Cirque Du Soleil-Varekai shows, and two weekends of Ohio's elementary and middle school wrestling championships, Ryan said.

Business is expected to be slower over the next two quarters, Ryan cautions, as events tend to move toward outdoor venues during the warmer spring and summer months.

"The concert business in the summer months has continued to change over the last several years and its is increasingly difficult to compete with outdoor facilities for events and concerts," he writes.

However, Ryan says that the venue will host a technical rehearsal for the "Walking With Dinosaurs" national tour that will span over three weeks.

The Covelli Centre supports the construction of an outdoor amphitheater on vacant property along the Mahoning River near the arena. This, Ryan has said, would help the venue compete for summer attractions.

The city has sought letters of interest related to architectural and design services for a 5,000 square-foot amphitheater, which it estimates would cost between $2 million to $3 million to build. However, Mayor John McNally has said that he wants such a project to be constructed with other developments such as a riverwalk.