Omaha Civic Auditorium

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Omaha Civic Auditorium
OmahaCivicAuditorium.jpg
Omaha Civic Auditorium
Location 1804 Capitol Avenue
Omaha, Nebraska 68102
Coordinates 41°15′42″N 95°56′24″W / 41.26167°N 95.94000°W / 41.26167; -95.94000Coordinates: 41°15′42″N 95°56′24″W / 41.26167°N 95.94000°W / 41.26167; -95.94000
Owner City of Omaha
Operator Metropolitan Entertainment & Convention Authority (MECA)
Capacity Concerts: 10,960
Basketball: 9,300
Surface multi-surface
Construction
Opened 1954
Closed June 2014
Demolished TBA
Tenants
Omaha Beef (IFL) (2000–2012)
Omaha Lancers (USHL) (2009–2012)
Creighton Bluejays Men's Basketball (MVC) (1961–2003)
Kansas City-Omaha Kings (NBA) (1972–1975)
UNO Mavericks (CCHA) (1997–2003)
Creighton Bluejays (Women's Basketball, Volleyball) (MVC) (2003–2009)
Omaha Ak-Sar-Ben Knights (AHL) (2005–2007)
Omaha Vipers (MISL) (2010-2011)
UNO Mavericks (Summit League) (2011)

The Omaha Civic Auditorium is a multi-purpose convention center in Omaha, Nebraska. Opened in 1954, it surpassed the Ak-Sar-Ben Coliseum as the largest convention/entertainment complex in the city, until the completion of CenturyLink Center Omaha in 2003. With the opening of the Ralston Arena in 2012, all teams that played at the Civic Auditorium moved, which could reduce the venue's viability in its current form. The auditorium closed its doors in June 2014.

Facilities[edit]

Arena[edit]

The Civic Auditorium arena currently seats up to 9,300 people for sporting events and up to 10,960 for concerts.

In the past, the arena was home to the Creighton Bluejays men's basketball team, the Creighton women's basketball and volleyball teams, and the University of Nebraska at Omaha hockey team, and the Kansas City-Omaha Kings NBA basketball team.

Today, it is home to the Omaha Beef indoor football team. It is also used for trade shows, concerts, smaller conventions, and local graduations. On 5 February 2009, the Junior-A United States Hockey League announced on its website that the Omaha Lancers franchise would be moving to the Civic Auditorium from the Mid-America Center across the river in Council Bluffs.

It was announced on August 18, 2010 that the MISL is expanding into Omaha starting with the 2010-11 season. The team, tentatively called Omaha Vipers, will play at the Civic Auditorium.

The arena was the site of the Missouri Valley Conference men's basketball tournament title game in 1978 and 1981. It was also the site of the seventh WWF In Your House pay-per-view in 1996. Billy Graham's Nebraska Crusade took place at the arena in 1964. The University of Omaha-Nebraska Mavericks will be coming home to the Auditorium in 2011, as the university's men's basketball team will be moving into the arena as they enter NCAA Division I.

One of Elvis Presley's Final Concerts[edit]

One of Elvis Presley's final concerts was held at the Civic Auditorium on June 19, 1977. The concert was filmed for a CBS TV special: Elvis in Concert. Elvis wore the Mexican Sundial suit in concert.[1]

"You're no Jack Kennedy"[edit]

A memorable event at the Civic Auditorium was the 1988 U.S. vice-presidential debate between Democrat Lloyd Bentsen and Republican Dan Quayle. The debate produced one of the most famous quotes in American political history.

Quayle, then a U.S. Senator from Indiana, had been a relative political unknown and reporters covering the campaign wondered if he would make a suitable president if something were to have happened to George H.W. Bush, who selected him as his running mate. In response to a question, Quayle pointed out that he had as much experience in the Senate as John F. Kennedy had prior to being elected President of the United States in 1960. To which, Bentsen, a Senate veteran from Texas, responded: "Senator, I served with Jack Kennedy, I knew Jack Kennedy, Jack Kennedy was a friend of mine. Senator, you're no Jack Kennedy."

The Civic Auditorium along Capital Avenue.

Omaha Civic Auditorium Music Hall[edit]

The Omaha Civic Auditorium Music Hall, located on the east side of Omaha Civic Auditorium is used for concerts, Broadway shows, and other events. It currently seats 2,453 and is well known for its intimate yet casual atmosphere.

Exhibit Hall[edit]

The Civic Auditorium exhibit hall features 43,400 square feet (4,000 m²) of space for conventions and trade shows.

Mancuso Hall[edit]

Mancuso Hall is a large-events venue used for parties, trade shows, concerts, banquets, and conventions, among other events. 25,000 square feet (2300 m²) of space, Mancuso Hall seats 2,500 for concerts and 1,500 for banquets.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ [1]

http://www.elvisconcerts.com/tours/tour1977.htm

External links[edit]

Events and tenants
Preceded by
None
Home of the
Omaha Ak-Sar-Ben Knights

2005 – 07
Succeeded by
i wireless Center
Preceded by
Cincinnati Gardens
Home of the
Kansas City-Omaha Kings (with Municipal Auditorium (Kansas City)

1972 – 75
Succeeded by
Kemper Arena