Commentary: El Paso, TX – MountainStar Sports Group announced today it will help fund an advertising campaign in support of the City of El Paso’s efforts to build a downtown multipurpose facility that can host a variety of entertainment, including sporting events. The campaign is scheduled to begin September 3.
The ad campaign is geared to generate support for the City’s efforts to get the arena built, and to encourage 2012 Bond voters to make sure their original vote in favor of a downtown, multipurpose arena is honored. The ad effort was initiated by MountainStar because a small group of activists has tried to stop the arena from being built, and MountainStar says it’s time for El Pasoans to speak up against the delays and expense and finally get what they voted for – a multipurpose entertainment facility.
“When we learned the funding of a legal strategy for a small group who oppose the arena was coming from outside El Paso, we felt it was time for El Paso’s residents and taxpayers to speak up. We want to help El Pasoans do that, and give them a voice in this matter,” said Josh Hunt, CEO of MountainStar Sports Group. Hunt said the delays and legal tactics by the opposition are costing taxpayers. “We know that the longer construction is delayed, the more it will cost. We want to see the City proceed to get the facility built, and we believe voters knew what they wanted when they voted for the proposition.”
The campaign will point out 71.67% voters - over 100,000 El Pasoans - voted for the proposition that included, “a multipurpose performing arts and entertainment facility located in Downtown El Paso.” While the opposition says that “sports” was not included in the bond language, MountainStar says voters always knew what they voted for and want more entertainment, including sporting events. “We believe we’re speaking up for El Pasoans who voted and who want access to more of everything, not a few, select things,” said Hunt. “Sports is considered entertainment all over the world, and we feel that to hang up the arena construction by redefining words is not fair to the voters.” He added, “Outside influences are trying to define what entertainment is for El Pasoans. Since when does ‘entertainment’ not include sporting events?”
Hunt also pointed out that sporting events, concerts, and stage shows are held in every arena in the country, because that’s how the economics work for public venues. “This facility should host as many events per year as possible to help offset operating costs and make it financially successful. That will be difficult if sporting events are excluded from El Paso’s facility, and the taxpayer should not be burdened with that responsibility.”
Part of the rationale behind the ad campaign’s support by MountainStar is to promote continued downtown development and revitalization.
“MountainStar is proud to be a part of El Paso’s downtown renaissance,” said Hunt. We need that momentum to continue, and having a multipurpose arena is part of that progress.” Hunt also said the historical argument by those opposed to the arena is over. “That argument failed legally, in El Paso and in an Austin court, and the City can and should begin preparing that site.” He also pointed out, “We’re sensitive to historical preservation, but every study done by the City says the Union Plaza site is the right place for the facility.” Hunt added, “And it should be noted that one of the most passionate and biggest preservationist of historical Trost buildings in Downtown is Paul Foster, a founder of MountainStar Sports Group. The historical argument should not delay this signature project any further.”
MountainStar said it is funding the campaign on behalf of 2012 Bond Issue voters who voted “FOR” a downtown, multipurpose facility. The campaign will include traditional and online advertising, and social media.