|Cover design by Emily Utne|
It's a bitch staging a rock concert in a minor-league baseball stadium. Weather risks, damage-prone turf, massive production costs, scheduling nightmares, deafening decibels in the neighborhood, and convincing 15,000 people to show up is no, ahem, walk in the park.
Unlike that of clubs set up to host bands nightly, the primary function of the blue behemoth of Energy Park, Midway Stadium, was St. Paul Saints baseball. From 1993 on, Saints co-owner Mike Veeck and executive VP Tom Whaley conspired to let rock take over -- occasionally. Each large-scale concert was like a baserunner with bad hamstrings jockeying between the Saints' 50-game home calendar and bands' touring routes. There were scores, yes. But some hard lessons too.
Midway Stadium: A Photo History