Marketing RFP Issued By The Classic Center Authority

The Classic Center CCA (“CCA”), an Authority of the State of Georgia, is soliciting proposals from firms interested in providing professional event booking and marketing services for the CCA, including for a new public arena to be constructed on the CCA campus in downtown Athens, Georgia, known as Project No. ARENA1, Classic Center Arena Project (“Project”).

The CCA is responsible for the operations and management of the public assembly facilities of The Classic Center, in Athens, Georgia. A new Arena will be made part of the Authority’s responsibility within the existing complex of venues it operates in Athens. The Authority was created in 1988 by the state of Georgia Legislature and is a quasigovernmental not-for-profit organization. The Mission Statement of The Classic Center: “To seek to enhance the quality of life in Athens- Clarke County by serving as the cultural, civic, and social center of the Southeast by generating maximum economic impact.” The Brand Statement of The Classic Center: “Through a thoughtfully planned and conveniently placed facility located in a uniquely vibrant and charming cultural environment and proactive, creative approach to personal service, The Classic Center elevates the experience of events to exceed the expectations of our guests.”

The existing Classic Center is an 350,000 square foot (includes all pre-function/lobby spaces) public assembly facility located in the northeast section of the state of Georgia and is approximately sixty (60) miles northeast of Atlanta, Georgia. The Classic Center Authority was formed in 1988 and currently holds a 50-year lease (beginning in 2020) on The Classic Center which is owned by the Unified Government of Athens-Clarke County (ACC). ACC serves an immediate area population of approximately 126,000 with a growth of over 9% since year 2010. The Center is also a business, cultural and social hub for the many surrounding counties/communities in Northeast Georgia that include, but are not limited to, the counties of Oconee, Barrow, Greene, Gwinnett, and Madison. The Center includes a 2000 seat performing arts theater, 18,000 square foot ballroom (divisible into 10 breakout room), 55,000 square foot exhibit hall, historic 3,000 square foot Firehall, a 9,000 square foot indoor Atrium, fully functional 5,000 square foot kitchen facility, a 12,000 square foot break-out space in its renovation of an old warehouse now making up the Foundry Street Ballrooms, and an additional 4 more break-out rooms above its exhibit space totaling 7000 square feet making a total possible 29 break-out rooms. More information can be obtained about The Center at

Arena Project & Timeline: 

As the basis for the services sought by this RFP, the CCA is developing and soon constructing a new 5500/6000 + fixed/telescopic seating capacity Arena in downtown Athens, Georgia. It will host a variety of entertainment, concert, sports, and convention activities. A focus for the venue creation will be constructing and designing an Arena that will provide an exceptional experience for music concerts and entertainment- from both the artists and attendee perspective. While we anticipate regularly drawing attendees from a 200-mile radius from Athens GA, the Arena will serve the entire north Georgia, and southeastern U.S. region. The notoriety of downtown Athens and high population due to the University of Georgia campus, as well as the vibrant Athens music scene will help the notoriety of this venue. The Arena is currently in the planning, design and programming stages having been fully approved in a 2019 community SPLOST referendum and the architect, Perkins & Will, is anticipated to soon be under contract under contract and to have begun design work in January 2021. Land and the specific site for the Arena has already been identified and secured. We are imminently soliciting a Construction Management firm (CM at-risk) as a partner to our team to build the Arena, with anticipated completion in the fall of 2023.

Scope of Work:

The CCA, specifically with regard to the new Arena being developed, seeks to formally partner with an entertainment industry leader and experienced professional organization to specifically:

1) Assist and partner with the CCA to secure prominent national touring entertainment and concert bookings to be held within the new Classic Center Arena to meet the Arena event goals

2) Assist and partner with the CCA to market and advertise the Arena’s hosted ticketed entertainment events to the region to drive ticket sales to meet each engagements’ financial objectives

3) Assist with marketing Athens as viable market outside of Atlanta that can benefit from the UGA population as well as surrounding metro areas that can be looked at as a viable market to promoters and presenters to bring talent to Athens. 

4) Assist and partner with the CCA to Identify, target, and maximize all business, financial and revenue opportunities of and related to the new Arena so the CCA might realize appropriate net return over the initial 10-year opening period.

Due Date:

2/19/21 2:00 PM


THE CLASSIC CENTER 300 N Thomas Street Athens, Georgia 30601

Relevant agencies to consider include Finn Partners and W20 Group.

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