The Citrus Bowl - "Citrus" No More? Venue May Reopen With New Name
March 25th, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - When the Citrus Bowl emerges from its $200 million renovation, it may no longer be called the Citrus Bowl. That's because the group responsible for bringing in major sporting events is looking to sell the naming rights.
Steve Hogan is CEO of Florida Citrus Sports, host of headlining Citrus Bowl events like the Capital One Bowl college football game and the Florida Classic. He says name change or no, the venue will not lose its citrus “flavor” as an homage to the community’s roots.
“That will live on in a lot of ways – out and around the building, and certainly in our nationally-televised Florida Citrus Parade, and a whole host of other ways,” Hogan says. “So I don’t think it’s going anywhere.”
“But the naming of the building from a corporate standpoint is really just kind of ‘keeping up with the Joneses,’” he adds, noting that selling stadium naming rights is a very common practice.
In fact, the Florida Citrus Bowl has changed names several times in its nearly 80-year history, taking on its current moniker after the Florida Citrus Commission became a major sponsor in 1984. The commission sponsored games until 2002.
Hogan says finding the right company to buy naming rights will help offset the money his company is putting into the venue – $6 million into the current renovation project and about $10 million in operations over the next decade – and keep the Citrus Bowl competitive against nearby stadiums with the advantage of in-house NFL teams, like Tampa and Miami.