Big-name concerts breathe new life into BMO Harris Bradley Center

MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- If you're a fan of concerts, you probably noticed the BMO Harris Bradley Center has announced a bunch of big names in recent weeks. Is it an effort to stay on the community's radar?

Amidst all the talk of building a new arena, it's easy to think the BMO Harris Bradley Center has lost a bit of its luster. But when you're a young hockey player, the place seems magical.

"It's the biggest thing, they love seeing it when we're on the freeway. They point it out as we're driving by," said Adam Draves, a coach and alum of Shaw Hockey.

FOX6 News caught up with a group of Shaw hockey players as they eagerly waited to enter the arena. The group was slotted to play on the ice in between periods of a Milwaukee Admirals game.

As the players filed down to their locker room, they unknowingly became the first members of the public to get a glimpse of something special.

"We thought it was worthy of bringing out from the vault some of the amazing memorabilia that we've collected over 26 years," said Steve Costello, President of the BMO Harris Bradley Center.

Mementos from some of the biggest names to grace the stage at the venue are now prominently on display. It's a subtle way to remind the community what the center's contributed over the years -- and about celebrating the season ahead; in the midst of some recent big announcements.

"With first Neil Diamond and Fleetwood Mac yesterday... And now, The Who on top of that being announced, you know, over James Taylor, Pearl Jam and Ariana Grande and Hunter Hayes -- all sorts of amazing music alone are coming here to the center," said Costello.

Filling in the season's lineup with powerhouse performers might be one way of keeping the venue relevant -- amidst all the talk of a replacement.

"While we figure out the new arena issue, we're going to continue to work hard to present the kind of caliber of shows that we've just announced in the last week," said Costello.

If the acts prove as popular as they're hoping, perhaps it won't be just young hockey players who can't wait to get in the doors.