A) “MetraPark, a multi-use complex, shall serve entertainment, trade, athletic, educational and agricultural needs of the region by providing quality facilities, programs and events with complete and efficient services to the economic benefit of the region.”
The mission statement was created over a decade ago by the MetraPark Board and has been periodically reviewed over time. We realize the mission statement is wordy and probably grammatically clumsy. In this case it’s not about the grammar, it’s about the intent. MetraPark is intended to entertain, showcase the best efforts of our region, and create economic benefit for Yellowstone County and the surrounding area. The entertainment component is most obvious but equal weight is given to the goal of creating economic well being through our efforts. Consideration is often given to high school athletic competitions, various commencements, and events that the public would expect to see held at their arena.
A) MetraPark is owned by Yellowstone County, Montana.
A) Like all departments of Yellowstone County Government, the Board of County Commissioners has ultimate authority. They hire and supervise management and appoint a citizen advisory board.
A) Approximately $100 million annually generated by visitors from outside of Yellowstone County. This is the amount visitors spend on food, shopping, fuel, and lodging or any number of other local services.
A) MetraPark does not set base ticket prices for events. Ticket price is set by the promoter of the show/event.
A) The revenue from the base ticket price goes to the promoter of a show/event. However, in order to provide certain services to the promoter and to the customer and to generate revenue for the facility, MetraPark does charge some nominal fees on top of the base ticket price:
Ticket Outlet Convenience Fee: $2/ticket charged at outlets only. Helps cover the cost of equipment, software, and support for ticket outlets such as Rimrock Mall and Cellular Plus stores.
Phone Fee: $2.00 per ticket on phone orders allows us to process, print, and mail tickets.
Internet Fees: In order to provide online ticketing, MetraPark contracts with a trusted outside provider. Fees associated with online transactions are associated with that service and are retained by the internet ticketing company.
Improvement Fee: $1.50-$4.50 (based on ticket price). The base ticket amount goes to the promoter. However, MetraPark does charge an improvement fee on each ticket. The improvement fee is allocated directly to a fund for maintenance and improvements to the facilities. This fee allows MetraPark to require less tax funding and to keep our rental rates competitive.
MetraPark does it’s best to keep ticketing fees lower than most facilities in the industry. For instance, MetraPark maintains its own in house computerized ticketing system rather than utilizing a national “brand” ticket providers who charge higher fees. This also allows us to provide a higher level of personal service to the ticket buyer when they are selecting tickets.
A) MetraPark does not “promote” events within its facilities. That is, MetraPark does not purchase the act/event/show. Instead, MetraPark works with the promoters who purchase the act and rent a MetraPark facility. They utilize MetraPark event services (ticketing, equipment, labor) for their event. They pay for expenses and hopefully make a reasonable profit.
To bring events to Billings, MetraPark maintains close relationships with various promoters. The shows and events that come to MetraPark depend on a number of factors: Promoters will book acts based on their availability for touring, the route they are building, budget, etc. Promoters will work with MetraPark to evaluate the Billings market to determine if the show will do well here.
MetraPark staff work with promoters in a couple of ways: 1) We regularly “check-in” with promoters to see if they have a potential show that would be suitable for our building and our market, 2) MetraPark will keep track of events/shows that are touring and will seek out the promoter of the show to see if there is potential for the show to route to us.
The only time MetraPark purchases entertainment is for MontanaFair where MetraPark is the promoter of the event.