McElroy Auditorium

2013 - Venue/Ballrooms

Some of music’s greatest acts have played in McElroy Auditorium. Also known as the Hippodrome, McElroy Auditorium is a multipurpose arena located in Waterloo, Iowa. The auditorium was built in 1919 and renovated in 1936. At that time the roof was raised, the floor was excavated, and additional seating was added.

As a concert venue, McElroy Auditorium’s construction materials, roof design and room design make the venue acoustically well-suited for concerts. It has hosted a variety of musical acts representing every musical style, including some artists and bands who have been inducted into the Iowa Rock ‘n Roll Music Association’s Hall of Fame. This is just a short list of the many acts who have played at McElroy Auditorium: Aerosmith, The Beach Boys, Blake Shelton, Buddy Holly, Destiny's Child, Dierks Bentley, Disturbed, Garth Brooks, Glenn Miller and his Orchestra, Gym Class Heroes, Jason Aldean, Johnny Cash, KISS, Miranda Lambert, Red Skelton, Rob Zombie, and Roy Clark.

The arena style auditorium, part of the National Cattle Congress complex, is also used for trade shows, conventions, livestock shows, rodeos, meetings, sporting events and more. It housed the USHL's Waterloo Black Hawks from their inception in 1962 until 1995 and the Iowa Stars Central Professional Hockey League during the 1969-70 seasons. It also hosted the Waterloo Hawks of the NBL and NBA in the 1940s and 1950s.

The auditorium has been in continuous operation since 1919, making it one of the oldest arenas in the country. The arena contains 6,630 permanent seats, 260 classic arena style box seats, and a 4,000-square-foot art deco lobby. With chairs placed on the arena floor, the arena seats up to 8,735 people for concerts depending on the stage configuration.

The large, indoor sports and concert venue accommodates the needs for performers and audiences today as McElroy Auditorium continues to be a home for Midwest entertainment.

The Iowa Rock 'n Roll Music Association Hall of Fame & Museum exists to preserve the legacy of rock and roll music in Iowa by honoring achievements, educating youth and inspiring artists. Established in 1997, we are a501(c)(3) non-profit statewide organization with many areas of service.

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