Lakeview amphitheatre stars, Miranda Lambert performs: Matt's Memo

Miranda Lambert crowd, Photo: Matt Mulcahy

"This doesn't feel like Syracuse! It feels like we're somewhere else!" Over and over tonight that's what I heard from people thrilled to be part of opening night at the Lakeview Amphitheatre.

I looked at people racing down the grassy lawn to get the best seat. I watched boats anchored on Onondaga Lake. I listened to fans of country superstar Miranda Lambert sing along with smiles stretched across their faces. That's when it occurred to me we've got it all wrong. Instead of saying "this doesn't feel like Syracuse" we should be shouting "this is what Syracuse now feels like."

When Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney took the stage tonight to introduce Miranda Lambert she appeared to have so much adrenalin rushing through her that she could have joined the band for their hard rocking opener. She soaked in the well earned praise from one person after another for pushing an aggressive timeline to complete construction and breathe new life into a once dead west side of the lake.

Her leadership on the ambitious project created magical moments for the first to sample this venue. There's the moment when they came over the hill at the top of the lawn area and see the covered seating, the stage and Onondaga Lake in the background. Or when the first sound of Miranda Lambert's guitar and vocals come crisply from the state of the art sound system reaching every ticket holder. Or maybe just appreciating a Central New York view and space unlike any other.

The stage is now set to assemble a lineup for next summer filled with an array of performers of various musical genres. That work is already underway. And word is already spreading of a successful first night.

With all due respect to a powerful performance from a multi-award winning country musician, Miranda Lambert was not the biggest star of the show. It was the Lakeview Amphitheatre which made Syracuse feel different tonight.

Any questions or comment please forward them to . I may use some of your thoughts on NBC 3 News at 5:00, the 10:00 News on CW6 or on

The opinions expressed in this blog are the sole responsibility of the author and are not reflective of the views or opinions of the station or Sinclair Corporation, LLC.

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