Andrew M. Cuomo, Governor | Richard A. Ball, Commissioner
Jessica A. Chittenden

September 25, 2008

State Fair Grandstand Concerts Generate $245,000 for 2008

2009 RFP Available Sept. 29; Will Ask for Booking, Promotion & Production Services

New York State Agriculture Commissioner Patrick Hooker and New York State Fair Director Dan OíHara today announced a $245,000 surplus from the concert series during the 2008 New York State Fair. By selling more concert tickets than ever before, the Fairís entertainment at the Mohegan Sun Grandstand for the first time in recent history ended up in the black.

"We are thrilled with the results of the 2008 entertainment," the Commissioner said. "Never before have we sold so many tickets and had three nearly sold-out shows during one fair. While we were lucky with great weather throughout the twelve days of the Fair, we also had a terrific lineup of artists and benefited greatly from the professional services of Live Nation in booking and promoting our entertainment this year."

New York State Fair Director Dan OíHara said, "I am very pleased with the outcome of this yearís grandstand concert series and gratified that so many people enjoyed the musical lineup. Iím already looking forward to another great concert season next year."

More people attended the Fairís 2008 concert series than ever before, setting a new record of 97,163 people. That beat the previous record of 88,646 people set in 2006 and surpassed 2007ís total of 78,445 people by nearly 24 percent.

The Fair brought in a record $4,663,809 in ticket sales, along with $389,290 in other revenue, including beer and food sales and sponsorships. All told, a 34 percent increase in revenue from last year.

While costs also increased in 2008, the bottom line turned out favorable with a net surplus of $245,302 for the 2008 State Fair entertainment at the Mohegan Sun Grandstand. In 2007, the Fair had a deficit of $12,495 on the Grandstandís concerts. The accounting of the Grandstand entertainment takes into account the cost of entertainers, production costs including the stage and catering, as well as booking fees. Those costs equate to $4,807,797 this year, a 27 percent increase over last year. A schedule of this yearís Grandstand entertainment revenue and expenses is below.

The Commissioner said, "Outsourcing the entertainment this year turned out to be a positive situation for not only the 97,000 people who enjoyed the bands, but the Fairís overall budget. As promised, we are issuing our Request for Proposals for the 2009 State Fair entertainment next Monday. In addition to seeking assistance in the booking and promotion of acts, the RFP also requires proposers to provide the actual production of concerts as well. This will remove the State Fair from the entertainment business in its entirety and allow our staff to focus on the core responsibilities of the State Fair which is to showcase all things New York, in particular agriculture, in a fun, family atmosphere."

The Request for Proposals (RFP) for 2009 State Fair Entertainment will seek proposals that book, promote and produce entertainment for the 12 days of the 2009 New York State Fair in Syracuse. That includes identifying and evaluating entertainment events to be presented at the Grandstand and Chevy Court, both of which must be approved by the State Fair. The selected proposer will be responsible for the sale and promotion of those acts. The selected proposer must also negotiate and execute all contracts for Grandstand entertainment, as well as provide all necessary production, catering, sound, lights and backline. The RFP is for a one-year contract with two renewable options at the discretion of the New York State Fair.

The New York State Fair currently offers entertainment on twelve nights at its outdoor Grandstand, which can seat 17,000 people and requires paid admission. Chevy Court has traditionally offered two acts daily, free of charge, and can accommodate up to 5,000 people.

The RFP will be available on Monday, September 29, 2008 on the Departmentís website at under the "Whatís New" section on the front page.

2007-2008 New York State Fair Grandstand Entertainment:


2008 Press Releases