New Coliseum dedicates vets memorial, holds public open house

The new Nassau Coliseum was opened to the public today during an open house event.

The day began with a new veteran's memorial being unveiled. The memorial features flowing water across its surface and an eternal flame in the center. The flame was lit by the National Guard.

Those who attended the event say it honored those who made the ultimate sacrifice.

"I like to reflect back on three of my close friends I lost during the war," said Fabrizioc Bustos, a U.S. Army combat veteran.

Inside the arena, attendees were able to inspect the $165 million facility that took about 20 months to complete. Some said the building is "absolutely gorgeous" while others said the seats in the upper section are "too narrow."

Harold Friedman, of East Rockaway, surely would have taken a "narrow" seat over the folding chair he was offered during the venue's inaugural concert this past week.

The Billy Joel super fan was stunned to see he did not have a seat - even though his ticket said he had one in row 16.

"I was surprised that they could sell a seat that didn't exist," Friedman told News 12. "You would have thought that they would have had some better planning than that."

Management at the new venue says, "Tickets to opening events are typically sold before the seats are placed" and it will get better as they make the necessary adjustments during opening week and beyond.

People also told News 12 that they had issues with the price of parking. It was $40 on opening night for the Billy Joel concert. A spokesperson says that was a special occasion and pricing will range from $5 to $40 with discounts being offered through online pre-purchasing.

The new Coliseum's head of development says there is a lot that was done that can't be seen, such as a new backstage area, infrastructure for acoustics, and building-wide WiFi.


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