“You Say Goodbye and I Say Hello” Irvine Amphitheater

Written By: Alana Aronson  Irvine Amphitheater

Since its doors opened in 1981, Irvine Meadows Amphitheater has not only been the first choice for Orange County locals in concert venues, but for some, their only. For kids in highschool that ached to catch the headliners at Weenie Roast, or say goodbye to Blink 182 just a few weeks ago, Irvine Meadows was a locale that parents felt comfortable dropping their kids off at to see some live tunes. For an entertaining night out for all ages, Irvine Meadows has been the go-to. Close, safe, affordable, and a great location. Date nights, last minute lawn-seating ticket purchases, or just an evening with friends, locals and visitors have loved the venue. My first concert was at Irvine Meadows—Jack Johnson performed “Bubble Toes” and “Banana Pancakes, ” and the cast of “Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County” was spotted just a few rows from us. This month, Orange County says goodbye to our beloved amphitheater…but only to welcome in a new concert venue proposal—less than two miles away from our home sweet home.

FivePoint, alongside Live Nation Entertainment held a press conference on Oct. 18 to announce their proposal for a stunning interim outdoor music venue to open the summer of 2017. Until FivePoint finds a permanent Orange County venue, the temporary amphitheater will reside next to Orange County’s Great Park, at the former Marine Corps Air Station El Toro base, and hold 12, 000 seats. According to LA Weekly, while the interim venue still requires approval from the City of Irvine’s Director of Community Development, a lot of optimism rests in its residency next year. It will be designed to resemble America’s Cup Pavilion in San Francisco, and from the renderings provided, will hold the same energy and concept as Outside Lands or Coachella. Facilities or vendors would surround the stage, concentrating the design on the artist and the comfortability of their fans.

“Music plays a major role in building community. It brings people together and breaks down barriers. Live, outdoor music is part of Orange County’s heritage and it is essential to its future, ” said Chairman and CEO of FivePoint, Emile Haddad in a statement. This is a sentiment about music felt globally, not just in Orange County, though those that live here understand just how deeply rooted our community lies in its music scene. From Young the Giant to No Doubt to Thrice or The Growlers, I’d be willing to bet that these artists that came from Orange County felt inspired by a band or two at Irvine Meadows at some point in their lives.

So, as Blink 182 has sung through the arena of Irvine Meadows, “where do we go from here?” Well, our smiles certainly won’t be fading through the summer, with such killer news on Irvine’s horizon. For now, we wait, and (fingers crossed) gear up for 35 more years of music that will save our souls.

Hey, Orange County Music Lovers! Check Out the Proposal for a New Amphitheater in Irvine

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