McElroy Auditorium

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Aerial view of the National Cattle Congress area; McElroy is the oval-shaped building.

McElroy Auditorium, also known as the Hippodrome, is a 5,155 permanent seat multipurpose arena located in Waterloo, Iowa. The auditorium was built in 1919 and renovated in 1936, when the roof was raised, floor was excavated and additional seating was added.

In 2018, the name of the venue was officially changed back to the Hippodrome.[1]

Arena Design[edit]

The auditorium has been in continuous operation since 1919, making it one of the oldest arenas in the country. The arena contains 234 classic arena style box seats and a 4,000-square-foot (370 m2) art deco lobby. With chairs placed on the arena floor, the arena holds up to 7,000 seated for concerts depending on stage configuration. There are four large concession areas and a 150-seat restaurant. For concerts, remote beverage stations are added along with an old milk truck that has been restored into a "hot rod" style beer truck with 8 tappers. There are 6 large modern dressing rooms and 5 large box office windows.


National Cattle Congress[edit]

The arena style auditorium, part of the National Cattle Congress complex, is used for trade shows, concerts, conventions, livestock shows, rodeos, meetings, sporting events and more. It housed the USHL's Waterloo Black Hawks from their inception in 1962 until Young Arena opened in 1994 and the Iowa Stars (1969-70) Central Professional Hockey League during the 1969-70 season. It also hosted the Waterloo Hawks of the NBL, NBA, and NPBL from 1948 to 1951.

As a concert venue[edit]

The roof design and construction materials along with the room design make the venue well-suited for concerts acoustically. It has hosted a variety of acts such as Glenn Miller and his Orchestra, Red Skelton, Buddy Holly, Johnny Cash, KISS, Aerosmith, The Beach Boys, Garth Brooks, Miranda Lambert, Blake Shelton, Destiny's Child, Jason Aldean, Roy Clark, Rob Zombie, Disturbed, Dierks Bentley, Nelly and Gym Class Heroes among many others in the past years.

Photo gallery[edit]


  1. ^ "McElroy Auditorium gets new name taking the Waterloo venue back in history - Radio Iowa". Radio Iowa. 8 August 2018. Retrieved 3 September 2018.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 42°30′35″N 92°22′25″W / 42.50972°N 92.37361°W / 42.50972; -92.37361