The Fred is under new management but it’s still going to bring the same great entertainment to Peachtree City. At Thursday night’s city council meeting, Peachtree City approved a new management setup for the Frederick Brown Jr. Amphitheater, home of the popular summer concert series and other events.
A team of Recreation Administrator Quinn Bledsoe, Financial Services Director Paul Salvatore, Purchasing Agent Angela Egan, Accounting Manager Mary Camburn, and City Manager Jon Rorie set about finding the best setup for success.
“Our team worked to come up with a management plan that we thought would carry on The Fred as it’s been and even make some improvements,” said Bledsoe. “We feel like we have come up with something that will work very well.”
In 2017, The Fred saw a number of changes. It was brought under the umbrella of the Recreation and Special Events Department and was no longer a standalone entity. Longtime manager Nancy Price also retired earlier in the year, assembling the 2017 summer concert lineup before she left.
“She had been here almost ten years, and so when she left we needed to come up with another plan,” said Bledsoe.
Temporary management was put in place for the 2017 season, but a long-term solution was needed. Amphitheater management will now be a joint venture between RCS Productions, Premier Events, and Ticket Alternative.
RCS Productions will handle talent acquisition, show execution, production services, audio, lighting, and staging. Among their years of experience, RCS currently works the Atlanta Botanical Gardens, the City of Woodstock, LaGrange, Marietta and others on their concert series.
“If you’ve ever been to The Fred, you know that a lot has to happen for that concert to happen,” said Bledsoe. “They will handle all of those responsibilities.”
Their connections with national recording artists will give them a leg up in booking acts for The Fred.
Premier Events will handle sponsorships, marketing, and concessions, as well as planning and managing events at the amphitheater.
Ticket Alternative will continue in their role as the ticketing vendor.
The City will still provide building maintenance and security and hire seasonal ushers, ticket takers, and box office workers. Amphitheater Fund revenues will fund those services. The City will also retain final approval of concert lineups. The management agreement falls within what was already budgeted for 2018 and does not require any budget amendments.
“I hope that what you see in the future is some upgrades as well as what some might view as better acts,” said Rorie, joking, “They would make my day, and I would be the hero of my son if they could book Van Halen. I don’t know if we can get Van Halen here, but maybe we can get a Van Halen tribute band.”
Rorie promised that, while there will be some upgrades, The Fred will maintain that “hometown venue” feel. That sentiment was echoed by the council.
“This is wonderful and it sounds tremendous. I’m looking forward to it,” said Council Member Terry Ernst. “Just please remember it’s Peachtree City’s amphitheater.”