BJCC Birmingham Makes Changes, Causing Promoters To Leave
The Legacy Arena at the BJCC has been closed since April 2, 2020 and is undergoing a massive renovation that will last 18 months. The arena has been host to countless concerts, sports events and other events since it opened in 1976. The last major renovation of the space was in 1992. While many felt this facelift and upgrade was a much needed thing, it did come at a cost and that the city will need to think about. Hosting events like the World Games is one thing and only comes around once in a life time. Allowing Local and regional promoters to come in at a reduced price is what keeps the lights on & the bills paid and they will find out real quick how over charging someone that has been in the building 35+ years will affect them long term. Great Southern I am sure will not the only promoters or shows that will not return due to the cost increases.
October 24th Great Southern Promoter: Shawn Bean who host Gun & Knife shows throughout the South sent out emails stating they were forced to leave the BJCC, Legacy Arena building after being at the building for 35+ years and two generations of his family's hosting shows there due to what he calls, cost increases due to the recent renovations. What used to cost his vendors $85/ table would now cost them $100+ / table and cost him as a promoter even more to rent the venue hall for the weekend makes it cost prohibited. Bean would host anywhere from 2-4 shows a year at that venue throughout the years. What is further more troubling is that while the venue may have spent multi millions on renovations, nothing addressed the horrific parking issue facing the vendors who visited the venue throughout the year that brought trailers and were forced to park on the streets and face being broke into each show. The City ban parking under the bridges and this took away a ton of parking and street parking in basically non-existing. You have never been allowed to park your trailers and stay connected too them in the building and the underground parking is too low for most trucks and trailers so what good is the renovations as a venue site if venue participants still cannot get in, find a place for their trucks and trailer and / or feel safe around the venue???
He can just as easily go down the street or take his business too another adjacent city and not have that cost increase and may actually save money as other cities may rally at the opportunity for him to bring his show to their town. The revenue from hotels, restaurants, fuel and shopping brought in from his shows customers , much less his vendors that come from all over the South makes a major difference in any cities economy. Someone like the Beans hosting shows 4 times a year in their town and also hosting the number of shows throughout the South in Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana, The Bean family has been doing shows since I was a child and Great Southern's Owner, Shawn Bean, has a large extended family who also host shows in their perspective areas. Victor Bean host shows throughout The State of Florida, their sister, Sondra does shows in Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas and I think they have another brother in Texas as well, so you can see the Bean Family is probably the largest family hosting shows throughout the South. It is sad too see Great Southern leave the BJCC, but this may be an opportunity to grow in another area and build his business in Alabama even more. Birmingham, on the other hand just spent Millions of dollars $$$ to make one show promoter leave the area, smart business mover (NOT!). Update coming soon on where Great Southern and Bean will move his Alabama show, but rest assured it will not be at the BJCC!