Update: Rochester City Council voted 6-1 to hold onto the name of the Mayo Civic Center. Consultants had recommended renaming the facility to Rochester, MN Convention and Event Center.
"I'm not looking for a different name," said Council Member Mark Hickey. "I think Mayo Civic Center says it all."
The council, however, did vote in favor of a proposal to rename some interior venues, including Presentation Hall, in honor of the Mayo Brothers. The plan also calls for creating a Mayo Community Gallery of relevant historical artifacts and museum-quality displays.
Only CM Ed Hruska supported the name change.
Original story: The Mayo Civic Center may soon have a new name.
This week, the city commission overseeing the building recommended to change the name to the Rochester, MN Convention and Event Center (the "MN" will be used when marketing the venue outside of Rochester, but dropped when discussing it locally). The city council will vote on the name change next Monday.
The decision to rename the venue was based on survey results and interviews with stakeholders. The research found that including "Mayo" in the name causes confusion among event-goers, who think the center is part of Mayo Clinic's health campus.
Additionally, the word "civic" is an outdated term that suggests a small-town facility. According to the research, only seven venues across the U.S. include "civic center" in their name.
The Mayo Civic Center recently wrapped up an $84 million renovation and expansion project aimed at attracting more conventions and other events to Rochester.
“Changing our name is a decision that’s been reached only after a huge amount of research, user testing, discussion, and thoughtful deliberation,” said Marv Mitchell, chair of the Mayo Civic Center Commission. “It’s important to all of us to preserve the legacy of the Mayo Civic Center founders, through whose vision and generosity the Mayo Civic Center was established almost 80 years ago.”
To honor the Mayo Brothers' contribution to the venue — which opened in 1939 as a result of their philanthropy — the commission voted to name some interior venues in their honor and create a Mayo Community Gallery of relevant historical artifacts and museum-quality displays (read more on that here).
The name change is part of a comprehensive project being done by the Boston-based firm Fuseideas. Their work also includes re-branding the Rochester Convention & Visitors Bureau and the Rochester Amateur Sports Commission.