Y-Live venue creates new option in area

Don’t ever let it be said that there’s nothing to do in this area.

In addition to all the many wonderful local summer fairs and amazing festivals all over Trumbull and Mahoning counties, fun local sporting events and an endless supply of restaurants and great dining venues, arts and entertainment options also are flourishing and growing.

And not only is the number of high-quality acts coming to our region bountiful, so, too, is the number of locations where these acts may perform.

Case in point: this summer’s newly relocated Y-Live concert held at Wean Park in downtown Youngstown. More than 20,000 fans of country singer Luke Bryan filled the newly created outdoor venue for the July 16 concert. The sea of spectators stretched from the stage area behind Youngstown’s Covelli Centre almost all the way to the Market Street Bridge. The spectacle was captured by an overhead drone camera and undoubtedly was visible to performers from the stage.

Fans — even those far in the back — had no problem seeing the performers thanks to the enormous, 120-foot-wide stage and the 42-foot-wide video screens that flanked that stage on each side. JAC President and visionary Eric Ryan said they were two of the largest mobile video screens in North America.

Pause for a moment to think about that.

Despite challenges posed by extensive downtown road construction and limited parking options near the venue, the event went off seamlessly. Fans from Trumbull and Mahoning counties and other nearby counties were thrilled with the opportunity to see such a big name in country music without lengthy travel time. Downtown businesses certainly also were pleased with the increase in downtown visitors.

This year’s show, of course, was the fourth time Y-Live was staged. The previous three years, each setting attendance records in their own right, were held at Stambaugh Stadium on the Youngstown State University campus.

The new venue, however, provided an advantage of more time to set up and tear down. At YSU, the promoter had been limited by obvious requirements that they work around YSU football practices at the stadium.

As executives with JAC Management Group, which brings Y-Live and many other events to Youngstown and Warren, point out, we all have choices to make with our discretionary / entertainment dollars. Choosing to spend it here, in Trumbull and Mahoning counties, has a significant and lasting effect on our local economy and in guaranteeing that big-name shows will continue to come here to perform, close to home.

We congratulate JAC, the city and all those who pitched in to help make this year’s event the biggest so far.

Now, we are looking forward to what is still to come.



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