Cumberland County Civic Center

Architecture & Buildings

North America, United States, Cumberland County

The Cumberland County Civic Center is a 6,733-seat multi-purpose arena, in Portland, Maine. Built in 1977, at a cost of $8 million, it is home to the Portland Pirates ice hockey team, various trade shows and the Maine Principals' Association high school basketball tournament. There are 6,733 permanent seats in the arena, and it seats up to 9,500 for concerts. The inside consists of one deck rising 24 rows, 14 seats across at its widest, and 30 separated sections around. The arena floor features 34,500 square feet (3,210 m) of space, making it useful for trade shows and conventions in addition to sports and concerts. There is also one restaurant in the lobby, known as the Penalty Box Grill. The arena has had a unique history of having locals sponsor individual seats at the arena. Those who pay to sponsor seats at the Civic Center can have their name engraved on their seats or dedicate the seat to someone they know. The arena's official name is the George I. Lewis Auditorium at Cumberland County Civic Center. The press box is named for sportscasting legend, the late Frank Fixaris. ZZ Top was the very first act to play the Civic Center, when it opened on March 3, 1977. KISS were scheduled to conclude the 4th leg of their Alive/Worldwide Tour on November 16, 1996, but the show was cancelled. The venue also hosted the America East Conference (then the ECAC North) men's basketball tournament in 1980. Billy Graham's Maine Crusade took place at the "Four Cs" in 1981. The current tenants are the AHL Portland Pirates. Prior AHL clubs have also called the "4 C's" home, including 3 time Calder Cup champions, the Maine Mariners. In October 2010, a task force voted to fund renovations costing $27 to $29 million. The renovations will include addition of premium seating, as well as upgrades to the locker rooms and other improvements. If approved by the large Civic Center board, it will be funded by a county bond measure.