City: Wantagh, NY
Address: 1000 Ocean Pkwy.
Coolest Feature: A beautiful view of the water, splendid for tailgating
Originally used for musicals, the Nikon at Jones Beach was born as the Jones Beach Marine Theater in 1952. The very first show was A Night in Venice, setting the tone for future performances until its value as a music venue was recognized during the '80s. During the early '90s, the theater underwent a large scale renovation, and the capacity was pushed to over 11,000 thanks to the addition of a second level. It would be renovated once more in 1998, increasing the number to its current capacity of 15,000.
In 2008, Rock the Bells came to Jones Beach and Nas brought out Jay-Z for performances of "Black Republican" and "Success." Last June, Drake shut Jones Beach all the way down with his Club Paradise Tour, reuniting Dipset for an impromptu performance. Near the end of 2012, the Nikon Theater was severely damaged by Hurricane Sandy, but a restoration plan was launched to have the venue ready for the summer concert season, which begins May 31 with a Band Perry and Rascall Flatts performance.