UPDATE 12/12/09: See new blog post regarding Oakdale name change HERE.
UPDATE 12/11/09: we’ve seen news reports that Oakdale is now “Toyota Presents Oakdale Theater”. We believe the Toyota reference points to Wallingford Toyota being the venue’s new sponsor, but that is unconfirmed. We’ll post more information as it becomes available.
Funny what you find out by listening to the radio…
While listening to a local radio station today (DRC 102.9 FM), we heard DJ Larry Wells mention during a commercial that The Steve Miller band would be at the Oakdale Theater tonight, November 7th. Then he said, “…that’s right, it’s back to the Oakdale…”. This took us by surprise, as we’ve suffered through all the name changes of the Oakdale over the years, but we still called it “Oakdale” through them all.
Anyway, this is big news in these parts, as the Oakdale has been around since it was a tent pitched in a field on July 3, 1954, and called the Oakdale Summer Theater. So I did a little detective work, which turned up the (unofficial) news that Chevrolet has pulled its sponsorship of the venue. Without the umbrella of a sponsor to give it a name, the only thing they could do was go back to calling it Oakdale Theater again, and this change was effective on October 30th.
I was told that there should be an official announcement coming from the Oakdale management shortly, so maybe then we’ll find out what prompted Chevy’s pull-out, and also whether or not the name change will be permanent. If another sponsor steps in the name Oakdale could be changed yet again, so we’ll enjoy it while it lasts. Anyway, to the locals who patronize the theater, it will always be just, “The Oakdale”.
Watch this post for future updates to this story as they become available.
(Update 11/9/09: Mary Ellen Godin of the Meriden Record-Journal has confirmed this news: http://bit.ly/eii7F)