Fleetwood concert crowd keeps city buzzing

Dunedin was once again pumping as thousands of fans poured into the city for Saturday night's Fleetwood Mac concert at Forsyth Barr Stadium.

Close to 30,000 fans with a serious case of Fleetwood fever, many of them having travelled from outside Dunedin, packed into the roofed stadium for the show, after hitting the city's bars, restaurants and shops earlier in the day.

Retailers reported the city, bathed in the brilliant sunshine of an early spring day, was humming as fans soaked up the atmosphere.

The result was expected to be a cash injection worth millions to the city's economy, as well as another marketing bump for the city on social media.

Fleetwood Mac entertains almost 30,000 fans at Forsyth Barr Stadium in Dunedin on Saturday night. Photo: Linda Robertson
Fleetwood Mac entertains almost 30,000 fans at Forsyth Barr Stadium in Dunedin on Saturday night. Photo: Linda Robertson
''It's all the stuff that makes a big difference - when people are having a good time when they come here, and they share that experience,'' Otago Chamber of Commerce chief executive Dougal McGowan said.

Dunedin Venues chief executive Terry Davies said the band put on an ''incredible'' night for fans.

''The atmosphere was brilliant and given such a massive crowd there, we were thrilled at the behaviour, with no major issues.

''I must admit I didn't think we would get quite such a huge number, since it was only four years since their last visit, but the tickets flew out the door once again.''

A highlight was hearing the ''electric'' reception given to Kiwi musician Neil Finn, he added.

The crowd also lifted the venue to new heights, as total ticket sales for concerts had reached 417,000 in the past three years alone, Dunedin Venues confirmed last night.

And there will be more to come - the ODT understands the next concert announcement is imminent, although details remain under wraps for now.

In the meantime, there are two other big concerts at the stadium to look forward to early next year - Elton John's performance, as part of his Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour, on February 4, followed by Queen on February 10.

Among those in town ahead of Saturday night's concert were Brownyn Nichols and Allan Dellow, of Timaru, who were having a bite to eat in the Octagon before heading towards the stadium.

It was the first time either had seen the band live.

The atmosphere in the city before the gig was fantastic, Mr Dellow said.

The Pila family - Zoe (16), Lily (19), Arielle (19) and mum Paula - had flown down from Wellington to see the classic rockers play.

Mrs Pila said she had passed her Fleetwood Mac fandom on to her children.

Many fans donned the black feathered hats, long coats and flowing black dresses made famous by Stevie Nicks, in honour of the songstress.

One of those was Dunedin's Carolyn Dick, who described herself as a ''big fan'' of Nicks and the band for more than 20 years.

''Their music makes me relaxed. I love it,'' she said.

Others showed their adulation by lining up early to be right at the front of the stage.

- Additional reporting Tim Miller


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