Musco Lighting

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Musco Lighting
Genre Sports lighting, mobile lighting, motion picture lighting, event lighting, and industrial lighting
Founded 1976
Founder Joe Crookham and Myron Gordin
Headquarters Oskaloosa, Iowa, United States
Area served

Musco Lighting is a privately owned, American company that specializes in the design and manufacture of sports and large area lighting solutions around the world. Based out of Oskaloosa, Iowa, Musco has been the industry leader for the past 40 years, lighting a myriad of Olympic Games, Super Bowls, and other major sporting events.

Since its beginning, Musco has pioneered systems that have made dramatic improvements in energy efficiency and provided affordable ways to control spill light and glare. Musco is responsible for lighting a full range of sports facilities, from Daytona International Speedway[1] and Emirates Stadium,[2] to thousands of Little League[3] fields around the world. In addition to lighting both Mount Rushmore National Memorial and the Statue of Liberty, it also provides lighting systems for large industrial areas, such as DP World Jebel Ali Port Terminal 1 and Georgia Ports Authority's Garden City Terminal.[4] Musco has also won an Academy Award[5] and an Emmy Award.[6]

Musco stadium lighting installation


When the founders of Musco Lighting formed a partnership in 1968, Joe Crookham was a part of a successful law practice in Oskaloosa, Iowa, while Myron Gordin was working as an engineer at Pella Corp and running a toolmaking business out of his living room. Together they looked to make Myron's startup business venture – G&L Industries – into a stable, profitable company. G&L Industries originally manufactured products that were sold under their customer's brand names, such as Excel Corporation, Snap-on, and Cornwell Precision Tools. In 1969, G&L received its first big break when Brown and Sharpe Mfg. purchased a large quantity of product and provided G&L with enough capital to expand. Understanding the limiting factors of their current business approach, Joe and Myron started seeking out opportunities to grow their company.


In 1976, Joe and Myron purchased the struggling Muscatine Lighting and Manufacturing Company in Muscatine, Iowa. This marked the start of Musco Lighting. Having little experience in lighting, Joe and Myron studied both the factory's product line and the potential market opportunities for them. A year later in 1977, the company released the Sports Cluster® system. This development featured fixtures that were mounted on metal cross arms, rather than the standard wooden ones, simplifying installation and improving reliability. By 1979, through research and development, the company introduced factory luminaire aiming, as well as the remote ballast, simplifying maintenance by placing electrical components in a service box near the base of the pole.


The 80s began with Joe and Myron pursuing their vision of having a completely self-sufficient portable lighting system. This system would enable facilities that did not have lighting, or lacked proper light quality for television broadcasts, to play night games. Musco soon demonstrated a prototype unit to ABC-TV executives. Two years later, in 1982, Musco Light™ made its debut – and television history – by supplying light to the first ever night game at Notre Dame Stadium.[7] Working through several engineering challenges, Musco Light™ was able to provide a flawless performance for what Keith Jackson would refer to as "the night the lights came on at Notre Dame Stadium."

This would provide Musco with an opportunity to enter the movie industry in 1983, when they provided lighting for All the Right Moves,[8] a Tom Cruise film. Musco continued to light large sporting events, including the 1983 Super Bowl, followed by the 1984 Olympic Games taking place in Los Angeles. They also impacted small baseball parks across the US by designing a four-pole light system for Little League fields. The second half of the 1980s consisted of Musco lighting the rededication ceremony for the Statue of Liberty,[9] providing on-screen lighting for the film "Field of Dreams"[10] and several others, and introducing several new products including SportsCluster-2®, Level-8™, and Total Light Control™ (TLC).


In 1991, Musco released its Light-Structure System™. This new system consisted of "5 Easy Pieces™" that made assembly the simplest and most cost efficient in the sports lighting industry. The following year Musco made it possible for the first Little League World Series[11] to be played at night at Lamade Stadium. After a successful World Series, the company would go on to become the Official Sports-Lighting System of Little League Baseball and partner to create A Safety Awareness Program™ (ASAP) to improve safety in Little League. Musco moved into a new area of sports lighting by developing Mirtran™ (ground level mirror lighting technology) to meet the criteria for lighting NASCAR tracks. Charlotte Motor Speedway was the first to receive this new technology in 1992 for "one hot night", a part of the 1992 Winston Cup. This innovative design would later receive the Paul Waterbury Award and make its way to the Daytona International Speedway, as well as several other speedways. Musco made their first major lighting installation in Europe by implementing its lighting system at Dunstall Park, in England. The final year of the decade saw a major innovation in regards to facility management with Control-Link. As a wireless control system based on internet technologies that provide facility managers the ability to control their sports-lighting remotely, Control-Link has grown to manage over four million schedules a year.


Musco expanded in 2002 both internationally by opening production facilities in China and South Korea to better serve the Asia market, and domestically by placing regionally based lighting technicians to service customers in the US.[12] The introduction of Musco's Light-Structure Green™ system in 2005 proved the company's commitment to clean, energy-efficient lighting solutions. The year also saw the introduction of the Musco Constant 25™, a 25-year warranty and maintenance program, guaranteeing trouble-free lighting equipment operation, including parts, labor, group lamp replacement, and constant light levels. The company also invested research and development efforts to build systems around the LED light source. The White House was Musco's first outdoor application with the technology and it dramatically reduced energy consumption and provided a clean, color accurate light. Additionally, in 2008 Musco brought light to the Losail International Circuit, marking one of the largest sports venues ever to be the largest sports venue ever lit, along with the Yas Marina Circuit in 2009.


In 2010, Musco was presented with one of its largest projects to date, lighting the East Span of the San Francisco Bay Bridge. After three years of development and testing, Musco had a design that met the performance and aesthetic requirements for the bridge. This design featured more than 51,500 LEDs in 1,600 light fixtures; all strategically aimed to highlight the bridge without shining light in the eyes of the 300,000 daily drivers.[13] The new LED system reduced energy consumption by 50 percent when compared to typical metal halide lighting. Since lighting the White House in 2008, Musco has installed its LED systems into some of the world's largest sports complexes and facilities. In 2013, Musco installed LED lights at Arizona State University's Wells Fargo Arena,[14] making them the first in all of NCAA basketball. The following year, LakePoint Sporting Community placed its fields under Musco's Light-Structure Green™ LED system, allowing them to be the first major sports complex in the world to do so.[15] Musco also installed its system at NRG Stadium, making it one of the first NFL stadiums to be lit with LED technology,[16] and at Twickenham Stadium, one of the first in Europe, for the Rugby World Cup being held in England. Additionally, Musco's SportsCluster Green™ LED system can be seen at work in the Dallas Cowboys’ AT&T Stadium. In 2015, Musco took on the unique and challenging task of providing LED lighting for both the Statue of Liberty[17] and Mount Rushmore, two of the United States’ iconic landmarks. Musco's latest projects of scale include Emirates Stadium, home of Arsenal FC, Petco Park of the San Diego Padres,[18] and Minute Maid Park, home of the Houston Astros.[19] Musco currently has offices located all around the globe, including Australia, Canada, China, Cyprus, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Jordan, South Africa, South Korea, UAE, United Kingdom, and the United States.

Lighting Projects[edit]

*Partial List




Ice Hockey[edit]



Major League Baseball[edit]

Minor League Baseball[edit]




Motorsports Venues[edit]






  1. ^ "Lighting Daytona Is a Massive Undertaking". Retrieved 2016-07-21. 
  2. ^ Group, Arsenal Media. "Arsenal to install new floodlights". Retrieved 2016-07-21. 
  3. ^ "Musco Sports Lighting". Retrieved 2016-07-21. 
  4. ^ "Musco Lights-Up Garden City Terminal". Retrieved 2016-07-21. 
  5. ^ "Musco plans $15 million expansion". Retrieved 2016-07-21. 
  6. ^ "Joe Crookham | American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration". Retrieved 2016-07-21. 
  7. ^ "Wayback Wednesday – Notre Dame Football "Under The Lights"". Retrieved 2016-07-21. 
  8. ^ ""MUSCO LIGHTING FOR All the Right Moves" by Chase, Donald - American Cinematographer, Vol. 64, Issue 8, August 1983 | Online Research Library: Questia". Retrieved 2016-07-21. 
  9. ^ "New LED Lighting System Will Illuminate Statue of Liberty July 7 - Statue Of Liberty National Monument (U.S. National Park Service)". Retrieved 2016-07-21. 
  10. ^ Robinson, Phil Alden (1989-05-05), Field of Dreams, retrieved 2016-07-21 
  11. ^ "Little League Chronology". Retrieved 2016-07-21. 
  12. ^ "Musco plans $15 million expansion". Retrieved 2016-07-21. 
  13. ^ "Cree and Musco light Bay Bridge with LEDs, Musco wins sports complex project". Retrieved 2016-07-21. 
  14. ^ "Wells Fargo Arena - First LED Lit D1, FBS Athletic Facility". 2015-03-26. Retrieved 2016-07-21. 
  15. ^ "$1B LakePoint Sporting Destination Comes to Life • LakePoint Sports". 2014-11-26. Retrieved 2016-07-21. 
  16. ^ "Sports stadiums embrace the advantages of LED lights". Washington Post. Retrieved 2016-07-21. 
  17. ^ "Statue of Liberty lights up with LEDs". Retrieved 2016-07-21. 
  18. ^ "San Diego Padres Install LED Sports Lighting in Petco Park | Electronics360". Retrieved 2016-07-21. 
  19. ^ "Houston Astros Get Musco's LED Lighting - Solid State Lighting Design". 2016-03-07. Retrieved 2016-07-21. 
  20. ^

External links[edit]