Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena

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Coordinates: 30°19′32.77″N 81°38′42.25″W / 30.3257694°N 81.6450694°W / 30.3257694; -81.6450694

Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena
The Vet
Entrance to the arena (c.2011)
Address 300 A Philip Randolph Blvd
Jacksonville, FL 32202-2218
Location Downtown Jacksonville
Owner City of Jacksonville
Operator SMG
Capacity 15,000
Broke ground November 27, 2001 (2001-11-27)
Opened November 28, 2003 (2003-11-28)
Construction cost $130 million
($180 million in 2017 dollars[1])
Architect HOK Sport
Builder Renaissance Group
Project manager Northside Partnership
Structural engineer Bliss & Nyitray
Services engineer Limbach Engineering, Smith Seckman Reid, Bessent, Hammack & Ruckman
General contractor Gilbane Building Company, Perry-McCall Construction, Scheer Construction
Main contractors Turner Construction
Jacksonville Dolphins (NCAA) (2003–15)
Jacksonville Barracudas (WHA2/SPHL) (2003–07)
Jacksonville Giants (ABA) (2010–present)
Jacksonville Sharks (AFL/NAL) (2010–present)
Jacksonville Bullies (PLL) (2012)
Jacksonville Breeze (LFL) (2013-14)
Jacksonville Icemen (ECHL) (2017–present)

The Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena is a multi-purpose arena located in Jacksonville, Florida.

It was built in 2003 as part of the Better Jacksonville Plan to replace the outdated coliseum.[2] The field is titled Sea Best Field.[3]


The arena was designed, using state-of-the-art techniques, to have the acoustical characteristics necessary for concerts.[4] The first artist to hold a concert in the Arena was Elton John in November 2003. Since that time, dozens of groups, including country, rap, rock, and others, have performed at the arena.

In 2006, a scheduled Dixie Chicks concert was cancelled, due to lack of ticket sales, which was seen as part of the general backlash against the group's comments on the Iraq War.[5]

Sporting events hosted include the 2004 USA Men's Olympic basketball team in their only game played in the United States, as well as the first, second and third rounds of the 2006, 2010, and 2015 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament.

On October 17, 2006 an episode of ECW on Sci-Fi was held in the arena.[6] In 2007, WWE held the Pay-Pay view event One Night Stand (2007) in the arena and as of 2017 it has been their first and only major event to be held in the arena.

The arena found huge success when the arena became the home of the Jacksonville Sharks in 2010 when they were introduced as an expansion team of the Arena Football League. The team was founded by former Orlando Predators executive Jeff Bouchy who is also the brother of former Orlando Predators owner Brett Bouchy. The Sharks have recently generated the highest attendance for a tenant in the arena's history.

It was the host for the Davis Cup first round tie between the US and Brazil on the weekend of February 1–3, 2013. It has also hosted PBR Built Ford Tough Series events in the past.


Currently, the arena is home to the Jacksonville Sharks of the National Arena League, the Jacksonville Giants of the American Basketball Association, and the Jacksonville Icemen of the ECHL.[7] It also hosted the 2011 ABA All-Star Game, which took place on February 26, 2011.[8]

The arena was home to the Jacksonville Barracudas ice hockey team from 2003 to 2007 until they relocated to a smaller hockey arena in the area. In 2012, it was home to the Jacksonville Bullies of the Professional Lacrosse League.[9]

In addition to its athletic tenants, the arena is also host to the annual graduation ceremonies of the area high schools.

Noted performers[edit]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Community Development Project. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved January 2, 2018. 
  2. ^ Schoolcraft, Lisa R. (November 27, 2001). "Construction begins on sports arena". Jacksonville Business Journal. American City Business Journals. Retrieved December 4, 2017. 
  3. ^ "Sharks to Play on Sea Best Field" (Press release). Jacksonville, Florida: Infinity Sports and Entertainment. April 9, 2010. Retrieved December 4, 2017. 
  4. ^ Sources for construction:
  5. ^ Welte, James (June 13, 2006). "Dixie Chicks remain defiant". MP3 Music News. CNET. Archived from the original on September 29, 2007. Retrieved December 4, 2017. 
  6. ^ "ECW on Sci-Fi: October 17, 2006". 
  7. ^ "Meet the Jacksonville Icemen, our new hockey team". WTLV. February 8, 2017. 
  8. ^ Pascucci, Gianni (November 23, 2010). "2010-2011 ABA All-Star Game Awarded to Jacksonville, Florida". US Basket. Retrieved March 20, 2015. 
  9. ^ Ferry, Jennifer (July 26, 2012). "Jacksonville's First Professional, Indoor Lacrosse Team to Launch in September". Jacksonville Business Journal. Retrieved March 20, 2015. 
Preceded by
first arena
Home of the
Jacksonville Sharks

2010 – present
Succeeded by