St. Augustine Amphitheatre

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St. Augustine Amphitheatre
St Aug Amphitheatre01.jpg
Address 1340 A1A S # C
St Augustine, Florida
United States
Coordinates 29°52′29″N 81°17′06″W / 29.87473°N 81.28506°W / 29.87473; -81.28506
Owner St. Johns County Parks & Recreation department[1]
Capacity 4092[2]
Construction
Opened 1965[2][5][6]
Rebuilt 2001 - 2007, Fred Halback and Les Thomas[3][4]
Years active 1965 - present
Website
http://www.staugamphitheatre.com

The St. Augustine Amphitheatre is a venue for outdoor concerts and other large gatherings on A1A in St Augustine, Florida, United States. The Amphitheatre seats 3,493 persons, and is managed by the St. Johns County Parks & Recreation department.

History[edit]

The Amphitheatre was built in 1965 to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the founding of St. Augustine.[2][5][6] The land was originally part of Anastasia State Park.[1] The amphitheatre itself was constructed in one of the old coquina quarries used to supply building materials for St. Augustine and the Castillo de San Marcos.[7][8][9]

The Pulitzer Prize winning playwright Paul Green was commissioned to write a play to be performed at the Amphitheatre. The result was Cross and Sword: A Symphonic Drama of the Spanish Settlement of Florida,[10] a musical reenactment of the first years of St. Augustine's existence. Cross and Sword was designated the official state play in 1973 by the Florida Legislature.[11] The play ran until 1996, when budget constraints ended its more than 30-year run.[5][6][12]

The amphitheatre was used infrequently during the following years, though it did host a free summer Shakespeare Festival from 1997 to 2003.[13][14] In 2002, St. Johns County acquired the property and the following year began an $8.7 million renovation.[5][6] The upgraded facility reopened in August 2007, which includes a fiberglass tensile canopy over the main stage.[15]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Bosworth, Jon (2007-08-30). "everything old is new again - the new history of the st. augustine amphitheatre". EU Jacksonville. Retrieved 2008-09-07. 
  2. ^ a b c St. Augustine Amphitheatre - Venue - Specs
  3. ^ St. Augustine Amphitheatre - Halback Design Group, Inc.
  4. ^ "Editorial: St. Augustine Amphitheatre plans reflect labor of love". The St. Augustine Record. 2001-10-21. Retrieved 2008-09-07. 
  5. ^ a b c d de Yampert, Rick (2008-08-21). "Amped at the amphitheatre". Daytona Beach News-Journal Online. Retrieved 2008-09-07. 
  6. ^ a b c d Reinink, Amy (2008-08-22). "St. Augustine gets amped". Ocala Star Banner. Retrieved 2008-09-07. 
  7. ^ Rapoza, Brian (2007). Birding Florida. Globe Pequot. p. 31. ISBN 978-0-7627-3914-1. 
  8. ^ McCarthy, Kevin (1992). The Book Lover's Guide to Florida. Pineapple Press. p. 79. ISBN 978-1-56164-021-8. 
  9. ^ "Quarry Historical Site". Anastasia State Park. Florida Online Park Guide. Retrieved 2008-09-07. 
  10. ^ Paul Green Bibliography
  11. ^ Florida State Symbols - The State Play: Cross and Sword
  12. ^ Rajtar, Steve; Kelly Goodman (2008). A Guide to Historic St. Augustine, Florida. The History Press. pp. 52–53. ISBN 978-1-59629-336-6. 
  13. ^ "Art thou ready for 'Much Ado About Nothing'?". The St. Augustine Record. 2002-08-16. Retrieved 2008-09-07. 
  14. ^ "Atlantic Shakespeare Company to present musical fund-raiser". The St. Augustine Record. 2002-11-15. Retrieved 2008-09-07. 
  15. ^ St. Augustine Amphitheatre - St. Johns County Government Gateway