EDINBURG, RGV – The Bert Ogden Arena opened its doors to the public on Monday in a ribbon-cutting ceremony that brought out officials from across the Rio Grande Valley. 

Robert C. Vackar, president and CEO of Bert Ogden Auto Group, his wife and Bert Ogden spokeswoman Janet Ogden Vackar, and Edinburg Mayor Richard Molina gave speeches at the event, sharing their excitement for the newly-finished building and expressing appreciation to contractor Alonzo Cantu and others who helped bring it to fruition.  

Throughout the ceremony and in a pre-recorded video that was shown, the words “game changer” were used repeatedly to describe the completed construction. The hashtag “#gamechanger” was even implemented in marketing material, all in an effort to emphasize the arena’s regional impact.

At 219,000 square feet, the facility is the largest indoor venue of its kind in South Texas and boosts seating for 9,000, including 12 private suites and six bunker/club suites, as well as a 40-by-20-foot LED scoreboard. It will be the official home of the NBA Development League Rio Grande Valley Vipers, an affiliate of the Houston Rockets, and, officials hope, the premier entertainment destination for the area. 

Despite the hefty, and somewhat controversial, $88 million price tag, stakeholders justified their investment, touting the arena is an “economic engine” that has already accounted for several hundred construction jobs. A study commissioned by the Edinburg Economic Development Corporation and conducted by UTRGV seems to draw the same conclusion, ultimately projecting that the facility will generate an economic output of $45 million every year. 

Whatever questions may still be unanswered, officials are happy to finally see the end of the three-year project and are enthusiastically looking forward to the next 30 years of entertainment and economic growth in the Valley.


  1. We, Edinburg people/taxpayers want to know if the land -where the arena was built is still under Alonzo Cantu’s name. If Edinburg City will be the Arena’s landlord and if utilities are included in rent. Is it true the monthly rent is $ 16, 666.00 payable to Edinburg CIty. How much did Edinburg City paid for theArena’s construction. Where there construction bid’s or Alonzo was the lucky one?

      • Really? Then, please, answer the questions if you know them. These contracts were signed in the dark and under very bad deals to Edinburg taxpayers – nothing to advertise or brag about-. And Edinburg taxpayers were not asked at all or at least explained what was the total deal. If you know it , please, share it! Just watch this video. The same explanation John Oliver is giving on the building stadiums with tax payers money and all the terrible deals for tax payers.
        For your info, our deal with Alonzo is the very same as it is described in this video.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xcwJt4bcnXs