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Local entertainment venues hurt by coronavirus shutdowns

ROANOKE, Va. (WFXR) – The ongoing pandemic has hurt so many industries from travel to restaurants to retail.

One of the forgotten industries, though, is entertainment.

Musicians have halted tours, sports have come to a complete standstill and comedy acts have taken their craft to home computers.

Where does that leave arenas and stadiums across the country?

We took our questions to one of the most popular venues in southwest Virginia, the Berglund Center in Roanoke to see how badly the pandemic has affected them.

The Berglund Center has been one of the many places that residents from Roanoke to Galax and Covington to Danville have been flocking for decades to see some of their favorite performers.

Over the years, it has hosted Elton John, Dierks Bentley, and REO Speedwagon in its Coliseum.

The adjoining Performing Arts Center has hosted Bill Cosby, Chicago and Jeff Dunham, just to name a few.

And every now and again, worldwide television cameras come to town for live tapings of WWE Monday Night Raw and Friday Night Smackdown.

…that was before the pandemic.

Now, many are scratching their heads wondering when we can see live entertainment return to Berglund Center and other venues across southwest Virginia.

Robyn Schon, the General Manager of Berglund Center says she hopes things can get back to normal soon, but she also wonders about just how long that may take.

“Industry professionals are forecasting that the remainder of 2020 and the beginning of 2021 will be bleak in terms of live events. Many concerts have cancelled until late spring 2021. It will take many months, if not years, to see the level of activity we’ve enjoyed in the past few years.”

Robyn Schon, General Manager of Berglund Center

Normally, Berglund Center hosts over 400 events each year from music to comedy to sports to Broadway shows and corporate functions.

Of those events, headlining

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