When Victory Theatre opened in 1921 as part of the Main Street Hotel Sonntag complex, the denizens of Evansville were fed a daily diet of high-class vaudeville: a silent movie, comedy skit, organ music, and then a 10-piece orchestra. In 1928, that dependable formula changed when ?talking? pictures arrived, and the venue remained a Loews movie theater until 1971. Having survived a late ?70s stint as a teen-oriented nightclub and a site for Partridge Family reunions, the Victory emerged triumphant after an extensive 1999 renovation. Now with room for 1,900 audience members, the entertainment mecca hosts top-tier musical and comedic touring acts and plays home to the Evansville Philharmonic Orchestra.
For 40 years, Spectrum Sound has livened weddings, proms, and company parties with a wealth of music, photo-booth, and AV services. Technical experts set up projectors and huge flat screens for slideshows and presentations, or specialized lighting for dance floors and stages. DJs crank out catchy tunes and hits across a variety of genres.
It didn't take long for the first professional hockey team in Evansville to make their mark; in just their second year in the All American Hockey League, in 2010, the fledgling IceMen won the Davidson Cup in seven games. Though that first clan of IceMen has since gone extinct, the team soon resurrected as part of the ECHL, where they serve as the minor-league affiliate of both the Columbus Blue Jackets and the Saint Louis Blues. During games, fans fill the 9,400-seat Ford Center arena as the polar-bear mascot, Blizzard, entertains crowds and teaches children of the dangers of costume warming.
In their 85th season, the Harlem Globetrotters have entertained millions of parents, children, and general basketball admirers with a unique brand of athletic precision and showmanship. For their latest 4 Times the Fun North American tour, the Globetrotters will add new 4-point shot spots located 35 feet from the basket, which is 12 feet farther than the official 3-point line but several thousand miles closer than the prime meridian.
Of all the positive things that have led Joke Factory Comedy Club to succeed, two may be the most potent: the regular lineups of local and nationally touring standup talent and the sheer moxie of veteran comic and Florida talkshow host Artie Fletcher. The latter of those two helped nurture the venue's capacity to host the former, prompting popular southern comic Eddie Caylor to dub the Joke Factory "the little club that could and did." Today, after having firmly established itself on the comedy scene, the venue serves up big laughs every Friday and Saturday, alongside its signature adult beverage, "The Joke."