Best Outdoor Venue

Anselmo Valencia

Readers Pick

Although AVA offered fewer shows in a down economy over the past year, there remains no finer place to experience music under the stars—especially on a warm desert night—than this 5,000-"seat" amphitheater, which offers great sight lines and acoustics all around. For those not lucky enough to get seats up front, the lawn is the way to go. These economy-class tickets offer a chance to either spread out with a blanket, or dance with real grass under your feet. B.B. King, Tony Bennett, Los Lonely Boys, Bonnie Raitt and Bob Dylan have all recently graced the AVA stage—and have reminded us how an outdoor show can still be more about music and less about spectacle.

Runners up:

2. DeMeester Outdoor Performance Center

Reid Park, 22nd Street and Country Club Road

3. Hotel Congress Patio

311 E. Congress St.


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