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MadVlad

More rave reviews about Hartford

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So, for the second weekend in a row, I've had out-of-town visitors here, this time, it was my fiancee's family from South Jersey/Philly. She had her Bridal Shower yesterday, followed by her Batchelorette Party last night. They were a little disappointed by the lack of a local All Male Revue (closest was in Waterbury. which, in the rain, would have been a pain in the ass), but were impressed with the club scene in Downtown Hartford. they were amazed that they got into various clubs for free just by being a Bridal Party. They primarily hit Blue and Up-or-on-the-Rocks (ridiculous name for a dance club, if you ask me), and had an absolutely awesome time. This morning (as they were all hung-over, milling about the house) I mentioned to all of them that a lot of people say Hartford has a pretty dead night life, they laughed and said they couldn't imagine how anyone wouldn't have a great time. All this despite them having to walk through the cold,pouring rain. Her sister-in-law even said she was bored of the Philly and wanted to move up here since she had so much fun (as a personal aside, I've hung out with them down in Philly, and had an absolute blast, just to set the record straight for the Philly nightlife). This makes the second weekend in a row that I've brought people into the city and they were blown away. Makes me proud....

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I have just have to say that over the past two weekends I have never been more impressed with Hartford.

Last weekend the Women of Faith conference was held in the city with 16,000 women of faith. I went downtown around 1:30 on Saturday afternoon and this was the lunch break for saturday and by the Civic Center on Trumbull Street, Asylum Street, Allyn Street, Church Street and Pratt Street there were thousands of people hitting all the local restaruants for lunch. The HPD had closed of Trumbull Street in front of the Civic Center and Pratt Street was closed and there were tables set up for people to eat outside after they got there lunch at the Rusell or Max Bibo's or Woody's or whatever. Every single food venue in that area had a line out the door and that was very nice to see.

This past Friday night Bruce Springstein was playing to a sold out crowd at the Civic Center, Circus o Lei (not sure how to spell it ) was doing a show on Market Street, and the Pratt Street block party was going on. Thursday, Friday and Saturday the convention center was hosting 4000 math teachers for a convention and Saturday morning the Hartford marathon brought more then 6000 runners to the area.

Friday night downtown was hopping and everything was ordely. People were not being rude to the out of towners, people were not getting angry at the traffic jams downtown because there were so many people walking around. It was a nice sight

Hartford has definitly outdone itself, lets keep it up!!!

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I must say/admit that I'm impressed with some of the concerts that HTF gets. Why is this???

Not to sound like a smart ass, but it's because we are the largest venue in the CT/ Western MA media market. Hartford is the seat of the media market including New Haven, Springfield, and even New London, whether people want to admit that or not. It's quite obvious though, from our list of events, that event planners do not see us as a small market with only 1.2M but as a much larger market of about 3.5M. This is not an "us" versus "you" comment (please don't take it that way) but in PVD you guys are kind of stuck behind Boston to get the big concerts and events. If you have a concert in Boston, people from RI will go to take advantage of it. If you want to have a concert in the state of CT 80% of the time you will have it in Hartford. Almost every major tour stops in Hartford because CT is such a large market. That's the big difference between what seem to be similar sized markets in Hartford and Providence.

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Hartford does truly have the advantage that it is close to New York City and Boston but not so close that it has to compete with them for concerts, shows, etc. It is far enough away to get it's own shows and these shows are almost always filled. Even this past summer when Dave Matthews Band came to the Dodge Music Center (the meadows) the shows were sold out and every single parking lot and business in the area was filled with tailgaters

There are also some great venues in the city. The Civic Center has seen some better days but now is looking better as the colesium has been renovated and Hartford 21 is part of the civic center now. The Dodge Music Center aka Meadows is also a great venue located within the city.

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There are also some great venues in the city. The Civic Center has seen some better days but now is looking better as the colesium has been renovated and Hartford 21 is part of the civic center now. The Dodge Music Center aka Meadows is also a great venue located within the city.

as ctman touched on, having the proper venues plays a major role as well.

We've got a 40,000 seat open air stadium football stadium, a 25,000 seat Music Theatre, and a 16,500 seat Civic Center. Big names usually want big venues.

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Good to hear your positive story Vlad.

Unfortunatelly, there will always be some naysayers...I was talking with a friend of mine who is a flight attendent and she flies into Hartford about 2 or 3 times a year. She said she was asking people where there was a good place to eat, and they came back with "there isn't much in Hartford, but Hot Tomatoes is good". That was the argument 10 years ago when Hot Tomatoes was the only thing in town, but today there are at least a dozen good restaurants downtown. Some people will always be down on Hartford. :rolleyes:

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Anyone tried that new place next to where Roo Bar used to be on Farmington Ave.? Is that a Restaurant, Bar, or both?

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Good to hear your positive story Vlad.

Unfortunatelly, there will always be some naysayers...I was talking with a friend of mine who is a flight attendent and she flies into Hartford about 2 or 3 times a year. She said she was asking people where there was a good place to eat, and they came back with "there isn't much in Hartford, but Hot Tomatoes is good". That was the argument 10 years ago when Hot Tomatoes was the only thing in town, but today there are at least a dozen good restaurants downtown. Some people will always be down on Hartford. :rolleyes:

That doesn't surprise me. I've heard older people complain about certain characteristics of Boston that disappeared over 20 years ago!

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Not to sound like a smart ass, but it's because we are the largest venue in the CT/ Western MA media market. Hartford is the seat of the media market including New Haven, Springfield, and even New London, whether people want to admit that or not. It's quite obvious though, from our list of events, that event planners do not see us as a small market with only 1.2M but as a much larger market of about 3.5M. This is not an "us" versus "you" comment (please don't take it that way) but in PVD you guys are kind of stuck behind Boston to get the big concerts and events. If you have a concert in Boston, people from RI will go to take advantage of it. If you want to have a concert in the state of CT 80% of the time you will have it in Hartford. Almost every major tour stops in Hartford because CT is such a large market. That's the big difference between what seem to be similar sized markets in Hartford and Providence.

Actually Providence officials blame Foxwoods, The Fleet Center in Boston and The Tweeter Center in Mansfield, Ma for loss of business. Probably the Worcester Centrum as well. And even though the Providence Civic Center is undergoing a $ 58 million renovation project, only about 1,200 additional seats will be added :angry: Plus luxury boxes.

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Good to hear your positive story Vlad.

Unfortunatelly, there will always be some naysayers...I was talking with a friend of mine who is a flight attendent and she flies into Hartford about 2 or 3 times a year. She said she was asking people where there was a good place to eat, and they came back with "there isn't much in Hartford, but Hot Tomatoes is good". That was the argument 10 years ago when Hot Tomatoes was the only thing in town, but today there are at least a dozen good restaurants downtown. Some people will always be down on Hartford. :rolleyes:

While this may be true I have at times played dumb at some places around the area and asked what's there to do in Hartford? What's a good place to eat? Whats a good bar or night club? What's a good place to stay? I have gotten pretty positive responses over the past few months as opposed to asking these questions say a year ago and getting things to do in West Hartford and places to eat in West Hartford, Avon, Glastonbury.

Braza?

BrazaFront.jpg

I haven't been there yet, but I hear the food is excellent. :thumbsup:

Been to Braza it is amazing, a must go to restaurant!!!!

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It's hard for Providence to get concerts because of the proximacy of Boston. On another board I compared Providence to Forth Worth, Texas, a nice little city but overshadowed by nearby Dallas.

The thing about Hartford is that there is a venue for every size show, the Rent for staidum shows (40,000+), the Civic Center and the Meadows for big shows (15-20,000), The Bushnell seats a few thousand, and there are small venues like the Webster for up and coming acts.

Another factor is that the Rent and Civic Center are run by MSG. So the New York and Hartford show can be booked through the same management company.

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Actually Providence officials blame Foxwoods, The Fleet Center in Boston and The Tweeter Center in Mansfield, Ma for loss of business. Probably the Worcester Centrum as well. And even though the Providence Civic Center is undergoing a $ 58 million renovation project, only about 1,200 additional seats will be added :angry: Plus luxury boxes.

I forgot about Foxwoods. That's some pretty stiff competition right there, they have concerts every night and are convenient to RI area residents. In Hartford I don't mind competition from Foxwoods though because they are in CT at least.

It's hard for Providence to get concerts because of the proximacy of Boston. On another board I compared Providence to Forth Worth, Texas, a nice little city but overshadowed by nearby Dallas.

The thing about Hartford is that there is a venue for every size show, the Rent for staidum shows (40,000+), the Civic Center and the Meadows for big shows (15-20,000), The Bushnell seats a few thousand, and there are small venues like the Webster for up and coming acts.

Another factor is that the Rent and Civic Center are run by MSG. So the New York and Hartford show can be booked through the same management company.

Don't forget the CT Expo Center in the Meadows, they get a pretty good amount of concerts too.

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I don't know if anyone here has ever been to the former Warwick Musical Tent in Warwick, RI, but they closed a few years ago, they claim because of competion from Foxwoods. It was an entertainment venue featuring musicical acts, comedy and ..............................

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It's hard for Providence to get concerts because of the proximacy of Boston. On another board I compared Providence to Forth Worth, Texas, a nice little city but overshadowed by nearby Dallas.

The thing about Hartford is that there is a venue for every size show, the Rent for staidum shows (40,000+), the Civic Center and the Meadows for big shows (15-20,000), The Bushnell seats a few thousand, and there are small venues like the Webster for up and coming acts.

Another factor is that the Rent and Civic Center are run by MSG. So the New York and Hartford show can be booked through the same management company.

Hartford has a venue for everyone which we in Hartford are very fortunate to have. Thousands show up for concerts and UCONN football games at Rentschler Field, thousands show up for concerts at the Civic Center such as for Green Day,Hillary Duff or Burce Springstein, thousands show up for concerts at the Meadows such as for Dave Matthews Band and Maroon 5 and smaller crowds but still a packed theater show up for concerts at the Webster and shows at the Bushnell and Hartford Stage.

The fact that Madison Square Garden operates the Civic Center is amazing because the connections and advertising MSG is able to do helps the civic center greatly as there has been no shortage of shows and conventions even (16,000 women of faith in town at the civic center two weeks ago) as there is massive construction at the site.

Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun are an intrsting combo for Hartford and Connecticut. The competition for music oriented shows seems to not be that big between Hartford venues and the casinos- especially for bands for younger people as teenagers going to a concert at the casino might not be the best of things. I read an article about conventions though and the small competition between the casinos and the convention center, expo center and civic center. It talked about how there is some small competition but large shows have to choose the convention center because there facility is much larger then any at the casinos (although there soon expanding). There are also certain groups that need shows in Hartford such as a kid oriented convention or a religious convention and some conventions such as one that will draw senior citizens who want everything in one place who would prefer the casinos. Although wherever they choose the money is CT's gain which is differant for a venue in RI because when they lose a show its probably to a venue in MASS or CT

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It's hard for Providence to get concerts because of the proximacy of Boston. On another board I compared Providence to Forth Worth, Texas, a nice little city but overshadowed by nearby Dallas.

The thing about Hartford is that there is a venue for every size show, the Rent for staidum shows (40,000+), the Civic Center and the Meadows for big shows (15-20,000), The Bushnell seats a few thousand, and there are small venues like the Webster for up and coming acts.

Another factor is that the Rent and Civic Center are run by MSG. So the New York and Hartford show can be booked through the same management company.

Well, I guess you could also say Minneapolis and St. Paul, but I wouldn't want to be compared with St. Paul either. Providence does very well on its own, thank you. Boston and Providence are two different markets for entertainment and traffic goes both ways on I-95. Yes, the casino's have effected Providence entertainments venues. Warwick Tent, comparable to Oakdale, is no more. They shared the same entertainment and the casino's could pay more. Also, the casinos are closer to Providence than Hartford. It is a 40 minute drive from downcity Providence. PPAC, comparable to Bushnell shares the same entertainment choices. PPAC is now hosting the Lion King for 7 weeks and this is after being in Boston for 30 weeks last year. The Tweeter Center, comparable to The Meadows, in Massachusetts is but 15 miles away and serves both B & P markets. Downcity Providence has many large clubs that fill each weekend with live entertainment.

Yes, when it comes to concerts Providence is difficient, but not because of Boston. The Dunkin Donut Center is over 30 years old and it is in need of great repair. It is the oldest of the new age civic centers in New England. In the 70's and 80's it was the premier location for concerts in eastern New England. There was no competition. Concerts came to Providence rather than the old Garden in Boston. Providence lost its grip when the Worcester Center and Fleet Center were built. New arenas compared to our aging Civic Center.

The State of RI is about to invest $65 million in the Dunkin Donut Center. This upgrade will put us right back into the mix for concerts. So, while Ft. Worth might have an identity crisis, Providence does not.

Mark

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Well, I guess you could also say Minneapolis and St. Paul, but I wouldn't want to be compared with St. Paul either. Providence does very well on its own, thank you. Boston and Providence are two different markets for entertainment and traffic goes both ways on I-95.

Mark

On this note a recent article in yesterday's Hartford Courant about New England mentions the fact that Rhode Island has stopped competiting with Mass and calling the the Boston and Providence areas two differant areas. Read it

Since we are not supposed to put copyrighted material on I'll explain how to get to the site

Go to www.courant.com

On the left side there are a bunch of options to click, click Opinion

Scroll down to commentary and the first article listed is New England New Century New Game (Oct. 16,2005)

Click it and the part about Rhode Island is under the effective collaberation part of the article but the entire article is quite interesting for all new england readers.

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It's nothing against Providence, it's just reality. Downtown to downtown it's 45 miles from Providence to Boston. That is a very easy commuting distance. That means an act can add an addition show at the Fleet Center rather than incur the expense of moving the show to Providence. it makes good economic sense.

Incidently, prior to the Fleet Center being build, the Celtics decide to play a porton of their games in Hartford rather than the Providence Civic Center, which I assume would have loved to have them. The reasoning was that the Celts could make more money in Hartford. It was far enough away that some season ticket holders wouldn't make the trip. So they could sell thoise tickets at higher prices. Hartford was a cash cow for the Celtics. Closer in Providence would not have generated as much loot.

The Distance between Dallas and Fort Worth (downtown to downtown) is about 35 miles. St Paul and Minneapolis next to each other. Both Fort worth and St. Paul are very nice towns. The comparision is nothing to shy away from.

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I don't know if anyone here has ever been to the former Warwick Musical Tent in Warwick, RI, but they closed a few years ago, they claim because of competion from Foxwoods. It was an entertainment venue featuring musicical acts, comedy and ..............................

I've been to the Rocky Point Paladium (I think it was called) a bunch of times in the past, they used to have really, really good bands there....

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On this note a recent article in yesterday's Hartford Courant about New England mentions the fact that Rhode Island has stopped competiting with Mass and calling the the Boston and Providence areas two differant areas. Read it

Since we are not supposed to put copyrighted material on I'll explain how to get to the site

Go to www.courant.com

On the left side there are a bunch of options to click, click Opinion

Scroll down to commentary and the first article listed is New England New Century New Game (Oct. 16,2005)

Click it and the part about Rhode Island is under the effective collaberation part of the article but the entire article is quite interesting for all new england readers.

I have seen advertising stating that Providence is the southern anchor of the greater Boston enlarged metro area. But, that is mainly to real estate advertising seeking Massachusett businesses to establish offices in the Providence down city area. They promote the lower cost of office space and land for new structures. This has led to Fidelity adding 1600 jobs in Smithfield with a 400000 sq ft mega structure. Another one is now being built with a similar number of new jobs. There will always be compitition between RI and MA. as there is between Ct and NY. And Providence still promotes itself without the need for Ma or Boston influence.

That 45 mile commute can sometimes take 2 hours with combined Provideence traffic and Boston traffic.

Providence was the second home to the Celtics for over 25 years with at least 4 games a year at both at the Civic Center and the Old Arena where the NBA Providence Steamrollers played in the late 40's. But, basketball was never really a big sport in either Boston or Providence, except for PC BB. When the Hartford Center opened, Hartford gained the Celtics and Providence lost them. To be honest, noone really cared here, those who did also had tickets in Boston, and Connecticut has always been the center of basketball in New England. The Hartford Civic Center and the BIG EAST Connecticut team, not to be confused with the or Yankee Conference offering, finally gave Ct BB fans a chance to cheer. Thus, it was like entering a new market. They often outdrew the crowds in Boston.

Mark

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