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TI amphitheater is ready to rock

The new Treasure Island Amphitheater has permanent seating for 9,400 guests and plenty of grassy space to accommodate general admission ticket holders as well. The stage will be torn down, stored for the winter and rebuilt each year spring by a company out of Kansas. Sarah Hansen / RiverTown Multimedia1 / 7
The Island Block Party will take place June 29-July 3, 2018, just behind the new amphitheater, featuring carnival games and rides for the whole family. Sarah Hansen / RiverTown Multimedia2 / 7
The new permanent amphitheater space features more food and drink vendor locations, an area for food trucks, metal detectors, and a concentration of porta potties a bit farther out from the main event. Viewers can also gather on the sidelines for dancing or hanging out. Sarah Hansen / RiverTown Multimedia3 / 7
In-ground lighting will help track a pathway for concertgoers after sunset. Sarah Hansen / RiverTown Multimedia4 / 7
Cords leading from Treasure Island Amphitheater's 20-foot production booth to the stage will be inset and covered seamlessly with metal grates -- n o tripping over exposed cords. Sarah Hansen / RiverTown Multimedia5 / 7
New trailers are set up behind the scenes to accommodate staff and talent. Sarah Hansen / RiverTown Multimedia6 / 7
Just beyond the assigned seating area is general admission seating on the grass. Bring your own blanket or chairs, and be part of the fun atmosphere. Sarah Hansen / RiverTown Multimedia7 / 7

Treasure Island has revamped its amphitheater space with more amenities, comforts and conveniences than ever before. The final touches were placed on June 28, and the venue is now ready for outdoor concerts over Island Block Party weekend, June 29-July 3.

Kevin Smith, public relations manager with Treasure Island Resort & Casino, said the upgrades have been in discussion for many years, and it's all been well worth the wait. TI is now home to one of the only outdoor venue spaces in Minnesota with permanent seating — complete with cupholders.

Over 9,400 permanent seats have been installed for assigned ticket holders and the general admission field has been freshly mowed for an extra 7,000 guests. The stage, which is temporarily removed during the winter, was in place and ready for John Fogerty and ZZ Top to rock out, kicking off the 2018 Summer Concert Series on Friday, June 29. Vince Neil will head the Island Rock Party on July 2, and America will play a free concert on July 3, ending the big show with fireworks over the casino. Now's the perfect time to visit the Island, test the new seating and check out the updated vending options.

The new space accommodates more food and drink booths and there's even an area for food trucks, a new staple for every outdoor event. There is also a party tent near the front entrance, featuring a bar and DJ, sponsored by Corona.

The new space has even been designed for easier entry and exit of the space. Additional parking has been installed, and concertgoers can jump on a shuttle for easy access to the front gate. Walk-through metal detectors will help ease congestion before regular wanding and bag checks. Then, once the encore is over, side gates will open and allow concertgoers to quickly exit, stage right.

The backstage area is now larger as well, and new trailers have been set up for staff and talent to prepare for the main event.

"The vision is to underscore Treasure Island as a robust entertainment destination for the region," Smith said. "With the addition of the new hotel tower in December, we now have the second-largest number of rooms in the state. We invite guests to stay on site, enjoy the music, and head over to the casino for a full evening of fun and take advantage of the myriad amenities Treasure Island offers."