Audit: Appalachian Wireless Arena Suffers Financial Loss in 2020-21 Due to COVID | News

The 2020-21 financial audit of the Pikeville City Exposition Center Corporation revealed how the Appalachian Wireless Arena was particularly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic over the past fiscal year.

The board of directors of the Pikeville City Exposition Center Corporation approved the 2020-2021 financial audit on December 13. The audit – which was conducted by Kelley Galloway Smith Goolsby, PSC – provided an overview of the arena’s financial statements and operations for the past year. , ending June 30, 2021. Chief Audit Executive Lori Dearfield presented it to the Board of Directors.

“To me, the finances didn’t look too bad, considering the COVID impacts that there was on (the arena),” Dearfield said.

According to the audit, as of June 30, 2021, the Arena had received approximately $ 1.533 million in total revenue during the year, and gross profit stood at approximately $ 818,000. The arena recorded total operating expenses of $ 1.772 million, resulting in a decrease in net operating assets of over $ 953,000. The Town of Pikeville contributed $ 745,000 to the arena’s non-operating revenues. At year end, the arena experienced a decrease in net assets (loss) of approximately $ 106,000.

Appalachian Wireless Arena general manager Paul Bowles told the board why the site suffered a loss during the year.

“For the entire half of the year we were shut down,” Bowles said. “I just want people to understand why there is a loss and that there is so much contribution from the city. It’s because of COVID, the way I see it. “

At year end, the arena had total assets of approximately $ 1.2 million, of which approximately $ 282,000 was net capital. Current liabilities totaled approximately $ 446,000.

One of the arena’s long-term liabilities included a paycheck protection program grant worth $ 225,600 that had not been canceled at year-end. The arena also received a PPP grant worth $ 257,800, which was forgiven. Total net assets were over $ 532,000. Total liabilities and net assets were approximately $ 1.214 million.

Following the board’s approval of the audit report, Bowles briefed city officials on the arena’s finances. During his short presentation, he said officials were able to host more events at the Overlook Events Center in Bob Amos Park for about three or four months when the arena was closed or limited in capacity. He said it helped make up some of their lost income during this time.

Despite that, Bowles explained how affected the arena has been over the past year.

“It was a very difficult year. When you think about it, our last gig before the pandemic was almost sold out, ”Bowles said. “But, the staff, they persevered. We adopted the rules as they came out. Believe it or not, we still accomplished 289 events during this time frame. “

He said he and other arena officials anticipate a higher number of attendees in January as events and concerts begin, such as the All-A basketball tournament and the Cody Johnson concert, which will take place at 7:30 p.m. on January 29.

“Last January we were only allowed to do All-A (tournament), and we only had about 5,000 people in the building that month, where this January comes in, we have All- A (tournament) and 5,000 people just for Cody Johnson, “he said.” So obviously we’re going to double the numbers we were doing. Right now we’re at about 60,000 event attendees. this year for the calendar year, about 420 events through November, so the event load is there. It’s just to keep that attendance coming back.

For more information on upcoming shows and events at the Appalachian Wireless Arena, call the Community Trust Bank box office at (606) 444-5500, or visit

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