The man hired by St Johns County in June of 2010 to rescue the debt-laden St Augustine Amphitheatre, announced yesterday that he will be leaving his job as the county’s Director of Cultural Events, with his last day to be April 20th.
Not only is Ryan Patrick Murphy responsible for two county-owned and county-run venues, The Amp and Ponte Vedra Concert Hall, he is credited with stepping in after former general manager Ryan Detra was fired. Murphy managed to develop them both into innovative, community-minded, and profitable operations.
“Murphy has helped the venues become widely respected and highly successful,” said editor, Michael Gold. “He has been a friend to Historic City News and should be highly desirable to any employer.”
In his current position, he earns 105,462.55 annually, plus benefits. He and his staff have accomplished more in the last nine years than many, locally and in the entertainment business, might have thought possible when he first came on board.
Up 50,000 more in attendance from the past year, in 2018, Ryan reported just more than 150,000 tickets sold at the 4,700-seat capacity Amphitheatre.
“All of those really cool, outside-the-box initiatives that other people really aren’t doing, we kind of created a new model for what was possible if a city or county owns a facility like ours,” Murphy said in an interview that appeared in The Record.
Today, The Amp is more than a place for big-name concerts. It hosts weekend and night farmers markets and other free events. It has instituted a sustainability program called the Green Hands Initiative. And, the Sing Out Loud festival has become a staple for music lovers with its free shows featuring local and national acts.
Although Murphy will be missed, he hinted that he’s going to remain in the music and events business and carry on a lot of the really cool magic and vision that he has done here.