Hampton Coliseum

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Hampton Coliseum
Hampton coliseum.jpg
Former names Hampton Roads Coliseum
Location 1000 Coliseum Drive,
Hampton, Virginia, 23666
Owner City of Hampton
Operator City of Hampton
Capacity 13,800 (concerts)
9,777 (basketball)
Broke ground May 24, 1968
Built 1968–1970
Opened 1970
Construction cost $8.5 to $9.0 million USD
General contractor McDevitt and Street Co.
Virginia Squires (ABA) (1970–76)
Tidewater/Virginia Wings (AHL) (1971–75)
Hampton Gulls (SHL/AHL) (1974–78)
Hampton Aces (NEHL/EHL) (1978–81)
Old Dominion Monarchs (NCAA) (part-time, 1970–95)

Hampton Coliseum is a multi-purpose arena in Hampton, Virginia. Construction began on May 24, 1968, and the venue opened in 1970 as the first large multi-purpose arena in the Hampton Roads region and the state of Virginia (opening a year before the Norfolk Scope in Norfolk, Virginia).

With a final estimated cost between $8.5 million to $9 million, the arena was designed by Odell Associates and constructed by McDevitt and Starett, both of Charlotte, North Carolina.[1] The venue capacity is configurable from 9,800 to 13,800 seats.


Hampton Coliseum was one of several former homes of the American Basketball Association Virginia Squires professional basketball franchise. The coliseum was also home to the Virginia Wings in the American Hockey League and Hampton Gulls in the Southern Hockey League and the Hampton Aces of the North Eastern Hockey League and Eastern Hockey League.

The coliseum hosted the Division I men's college basketball ECAC South Region Tournament, organized by the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC), in 1980 and 1981.[2][3][4][5] The 1985 Sun Belt Conference Men's Basketball Tournament and the 1987, 1988, and 1989 Colonial Athletic Association Men's Basketball Tournaments were held in the coliseum. The Old Dominion Monarchs basketball team played occasional games in the coliseum from 1970 to 1995, usually one game a year, although twice the team played several games in the coliseum, in the 1979–80 and 1984-85 seasons.[6] The Hampton Coliseum is the home of the Virginia Duals annual wrestling tournament, hosting invitational college and high school matches.

After being the site of many famed Grateful Dead performances, the coliseum became popular with live music acts, especially jam bands. The Grateful Dead performed their now-famous 1989 shows at the venue. The shows were later commercially released as Formerly the Warlocks because the band was billed under the name The Warlocks. The venue remains popular with the rock band Phish, whose multi-night stand in 1998 was released as Hampton Comes Alive as well as choosing Hampton Coliseum as the site of their 2009 reunion shows.

The world's first pay-per-view live broadcast of a rock show was held at the venue on December 18, 1981, when The Rolling Stones American Tour 1981 ended with a two-night stint. Guitarist Keith Richards memorably hit a man who ran onstage with his guitar.[7]

Most recently, the heavy-hitting headlining acts Pretty Lights and Bassnectar have come together to form the two-night annual event known as BassLights. This event took over the Coliseum on the weekend after Christmas and before New Year's Eve from 2012 to 2014. The pair brought along with them major supporting acts such as Big Gigantic, Gramatik, GRiZ, and A-Trak in 2012. 2013 featured yet again Big Gigantic along with Pretty Lights Music godfather Michal Menert, Datsik (musician), and Keys N Krates. 2013 also brought along the Analog Future Band who performed both nights alongside Pretty Lights adding a fresh new take on his music performing it with live instrumentation. 2014 kept the tradition of major opening acts going strong with the return of Beats Antique who was a PrettyNectar alumni from when they played in 2011 in Alpharetta, GA, Exmag, Chromeo (dj set), and Elliot Lipp. This event sold out in record time in 2014 selling out all tickets in the first weekend they went on sale. In 2015 Bassnectar and Pretty Lights came back yet again selling tickets out in two days. The openers for the 2015 event were Marvel Years, Manic Focus, Break Science, and Son of Kick.


External links[edit]

Coordinates: 37°2′5.01″N 76°22′52.82″W / 37.0347250°N 76.3813389°W / 37.0347250; -76.3813389