By Tracy Ouellette

SLN Staff

Local officials say there are excited to see Alpine Valley Music Theatre will be up and running again the summer of 2018, after Live Nation suspended concerts for the 2017 season.

“This hurt us this year; it was traumatic,” East Troy Village Board President Scott Seager said. “The hotel dollars that go to our chamber, which is our tourism entity were not what we hoped for and places in town like McDonald’s and Shell and the restaurants and businesses on the square suffered from the lack of traffic.”

“Last summer, the amphitheater closed for the first time in its 40-year history, and we all quickly realized the effect Alpine and it’s concertgoers have on our town is invaluable,” East Troy Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Vanessa Lenz said. “The benefits that Alpine brings to both East Troy and Walworth County are huge, giving a boost in tourism, employment and national exposure.”

Calls to Live Nation, which books the acts for the music theater in East Troy, were not returned as of deadline, so it is not know how many concerts are planned and what updates were completed in the off season. The outdoor theater seats up to 37,000 and is said to be among the best outdoor theaters in the state.

In March, Jon Reens, Live Nation vice-president of marketing for Midwest music, told the newspaper upgrade were planned for the theater, expo roof and food and beverage equipment, along with replacing some of the vending equipment.

A public hearing was held at the Nov. 13 meeting of the Walworth County Board of Supervisors Executive Committee meeting, for consideration of the music theater’s 2018 business and sanitary license application and operations plan. Alpine General Manager Brain Rutkowski said the facility plans on installing showering facilities and a general store on the campgrounds this year and possibly make improvements to the campsite.

The public hearing was closed after the plan was presented and there were no comments from the public. The committee voted unanimously to approve Alpine’s plan.

Seager said local businesses will be gearing up to serve the additional tourists and concertgoes in summer and was looking forward to finding out what acts would be in concert.

“Hopefully they can look beyond just Dave Matthews and Jimmy Buffett and book some of the smaller acts to draw more people,” Seager said. “While last year was tough, the local businesses know they can’t depend on revenue from other sources like this, but they definitely look forward to it and when it’s gone, it hurts.”

Lenz said the chamber is on board with helping promote the music theater and concerts.

“We love Alpine and will do what we can to make sure it’s a venue that’s here forever,” she said.

Alpine Valley Music Theatre is at 2699 Highway D, East Troy. For more information, call (262) 642-4400 or visit


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