This America’s Cup is NOT just about the racing

Published on June 3rd, 2013

To make sailing a spectator event, to really get the locals to embrace the competition, you better plan to have more more than just the races.

An example was the Korea Match Cup last week on the World Match Racing Tour, where the event was part of the Gyeonggi Hwasung Marine Festival. The race venue, which offers sketchy conditions, was surrounded by mud wrestling, pedal boat riding, face painting, dance groups, etc. The tour event is just one element of the festival.

So if you are among the group that is asking why there is now a 9,000-seat temporary outdoor venue in San Francisco to host a summer concert series, you are clearly not who the event is seeking to attract. You are already interested in the racing. It is everybody else that they need to drink the magic Kool-Aid.

This past weekend the newly constructed America’s Cup Pavilion made its debut with two sold-out shows. Located on Piers 27/29 in San Francisco, the venue hosted indie rockers Imagine Dragons on Friday and then followed up with rock icon Sting on Sunday. Here’s a review by Jim Harrington of the San Jose Mercury News:

“I caught the Sting show and enjoyed his performance. Yet, I was even more impressed by the venue itself. It’s a lovely spot to see a concert, providing some glorious views of downtown San Francisco — especially once the lights go up in

“It became clear that not only is the setting stellar but the acoustics are solid. The overall mix was crisp and clean, allowing Sting’s lyrics to be clearly understood. Such was the case not only at my seat, located in the center section on the floor, but at other spots in the pavilion. I spent much of the concert walking about the venue, climbing all the way up to the last row of the bleachers, where I could find nary a trace of echo.

“What I did find, however, was that some spots offer better views of such landmarks as Coit Tower and the Transamerica Pyramid. In general, the best views can be found to the right of the stage — in sections 101, 102 and 201-203. If your goal is to see the water, try sitting up high to the left of the stage — especially in sections 208-212. Yet the views of the water aren’t as impressive as the views of the cityscape. And seemingly every seat provides a good look at the stage.” – Full review

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