By OnMilwaukee Staff Writers   Published Oct 17, 2007 at 7:59 AM

Summerfest plans to begin renovating the Harley-Davidson Stage area on the Henry Maier Festival Park grounds this month so that the new facility will be ready for the 2008 festival, Milwaukee World Festival announced yesterday.

According to a statement, the new stage area, "will improve sight lines, sound and lighting capabilities, while increasing the area's capacity and providing for improved traffic flow in and around the area.

"In addition, the upgrades will include large video screens for image magnification of the performances and a comfortable seating area at the waterfront, providing attendees and the public at large with lakefront access and beautiful views. The plan also includes renovation of the area's VIP hospitality building."

The renovations were announced in conjunction with news that Harley has renewed its sponsorship of Summerfest and the grounds for another 10 years.

"We are very pleased to be continuing our relationship with Harley-Davidson and appreciate their sponsorship investment in this event, site and our community," said Don Smiley, President and CEO of Milwaukee World Festival, Inc. "They are partners in every sense of the word and share our vision of providing customers with quality. This renovation is needed and timely."