Saturday, November 30, 2013

Ticket sales slow at the Roar

Sales at the a box office for the Roar of the Rings haven't exactly been purring along. As Paul Friesen points out in his story in the Winnipeg Sun, not a single draw -- not even the playoffs -- is sold out. Winnipeg fans haven't rallied to the cause to watch the best in the business but that's apparently not too much of a worry for the CCA's Warren Hansen:

“We’ve done pretty well here,” Hansen said, Thursday. 
“At the end of the day... I would guess we'll have about 150,000 to 160,000.” 
The 2008 Winnipeg Brier attracted 165,000 fans. The last Trials, in Edmonton, came in around 176,000. 
“It’s pretty hard to compare,” Hansen said. “Because things are much different than they were in 2005. Back in those days we were still selling a lot of weekly tickets. And that has diminished slowly but surely... it’s more opening and closing weekend packages and individual ticket sales. The world has changed. 
“Our demographic is getting older, people have less time and less money.” 
And those old-timers also don't necessarily want to get up out of their La-Z-Boys and traipse down to the arena when they can fire up the telly and watch Vic, Linda and Russ (as well as Ron Burgundy). When your demographic is older and continuing to age, you're not going to get people coming into the building as much. That's nothing new; it's been that way for a while now. In other words, curling is a bit of a victim of its own success, at least as far as television coverage goes.

But the Trials was always supposed to be a little different. It's the best of the best and held once every four years. You'd think there wouldn't be any difficulty in filling the arena, at the very least for the final games. Maybe the fans in Winnipeg want to see who is going to be in those games before forking over their money. Get a Stoughton or a Jones in there, and sales will probably rise.

Curling simply isn't the guaranteed sell out is once was.

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