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The anticipation among golf fans could not have been higher for the opening of the 109th U.S. Open Golf Tournament, but after only three hours of golf on Opening Day Thursday, June 18, play was suspended due to heavy rains that flooded the course. The thousands of fans who turned out to Bethpage Black Golf Course on Thursday to see the likes of Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson also found out yesterday that because play had already began they would not be getting a refund or rain check for when the action resumed today.
The decision to deny a refund to fans was immediately met with criticism, and as that criticism mounted, the USGA decided to change its position. USGA executive director David Fay announced Friday that ticket holders for Thursday's opening round may have a reprieve. If the U.S. Open is forced to extend its play into Monday or a later date, tickets to Thursday's round will be honored. The likelihood of it extending into an extra day is high, as there is plenty of rain in the forecast for the weekend.
By Brian Kebel
At 10am Tuesday, June 16, the Philadelphia Eagles began selling tickets for regular-season home games, and by 10:15am, they were completely sold out. But no need to fret, as there are several ways to obtain tickets at reasonable prices on the secondary market.
One of the hottest tickets this year will be the November 1 game between the Eagles and their divisional rival, the New York Giants, at Lincoln Financial Field. StubHub is currently selling Standing Room Only tickets, ranging between $109 and $125. They also have Upper Level Sideline seats available for $128, and Upper Level End Zone tickets for $137. Lower Level seats are even steeper, but are listed at a good price compared to other secondary ticket outlets. Lower Level End Zone tickets start at $234, while Lower Level Sideline tickets start at $255.
Entering the 2009 Major League Baseball season, there were concerns among teams that attendance could suffer in the face of the poor economy. Teams attempted to keep their stadiums full by reducing or freezing ticket prices at 2008 levels, but still ticket sales across the league have seen a slight decrease from last season.
The San Francisco Giants took a unique approach with 2,000 bleacher seats at their home ballpark, AT&T Park, deciding to experiment with dynamic pricing, a practice that adjusts the price of tickets based on multiple factors including opponent, weather and pitching match-up, among others.
Seeking to avoid the secondary ticketing snafus which fans encountered during the Beijing Olympics, the Vancouver Olympic Committee (VANOC) is in the process of developing its own authorized resale Web site for Olympic ticket purchasers. A VANOC staffer, speaking on condition of anonymity, briefly outlined the Committee’s plans for TicketNews.
“There’s really not any info that we have other than that we are in development of a ticket resale site, so we don’t have any more info on things like whether people can sell for more than face value…we want people to use the site, so it’s likely that we will allow people to sell for more than face value. We want it to be a site that’s friendly to both buyer and sellers. [The resale site] is coming, and it will be a place where people can know that they are purchasing authentic tickets.”
English soccer club Liverpool FC has been criticized recently for withdrawing a ticket scheme that helped loyal soccer fans obtain Liverpool FC tickets. The Priority Ticket Scheme (PTS) is set to be withdrawn following poor responses from its 10,000 members.
PTS members have now been forced to join the much larger official membership "Belong" scheme, currently numbering 50,000, which will mean less access to tickets. "Belong" is open to anybody, unlike the PTS membership, which was capped at 10,000 around five years ago. Liverpool FC’s explanation for closing the Priority Ticket Scheme was that PTS members were enjoying an unfair degree of access to Premier League tickets. A total of 5,000 tickets were offered for each game to the PTS, providing a one in two chance of actually obtaining one. According to Liverpool FC, over 25 percent of people who were PTS members bought zero tickets last season, and about 50 percent of the PTS members attended less than three games.
New York moved closer this month to legalizing mixed martial arts (MMA) fights in the state, when the state Assembly Committee on Tourism, Arts, and Development approved a bill that would grant the New York State Athletic Commission regulatory powers over the sport.
Marc Ratner, vice president of government and regulatory affairs for Ultimate Fighting Championship—MMA's largest organization—said in a statement: "We look forward to the next step in the regulatory process and a continued dialogue with legislators. We remain very excited about the prospect of coming to New York."
Last season, the NBA got its dream match-up when the Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Lakers rekindled their rivalry in the NBA Finals, a match-up that benefited the secondary ticket market as well. This season's ideal scenario was supposed to be Lakers vs. Cavaliers, but the Orlando Magic spoiled those plans and tickets prices on the secondary market may have taken a hit as a result.
According to data as of June 4 provided by StubHub, the average ticket price for the four games in Los Angeles are down 20 percent from last season going from $884 to $678. For the potential three games in Orlando, tickets are selling for an average of $442. Last year in Boston, tickets went for slightly more than $700.
While patient Orlando Magic fans have waited almost 15 years since the last time the team was in the NBA Finals, not all of them will be able to see the team live when games shift to Amway Arena in the city.
Because the arena doesn't have a press box, the team is forced to reclaim hundreds of seats that will go to members of the press who are covering the championship. About 200 countries are sending press representatives to cover the finals between the Magic and the Los Angeles Lakers.
In March, the NFL's New York Giants announced that it had "sold all [one-time] personal seat licenses (PSLs) for non-club seats in the Giants' new stadium in the Meadowlands." Those non-club PSLs sold for a low of $1,000 for the Terraces to a high of $20,000 for the Field Levels, with the individual game-tickets prices ranging from $85 to $160.
The press release went on to say, "The only PSLs remaining for purchase are a limited number of seats in the three club areas – Coach's Club, Mezzanine Club A and Mezzanine Club B." The PSL price for the Coach's Club is $20,000, while the PSL for Mezzanine Club A is $12,500 and Club B is $7,500.
There are news reports that the NHL’s Vancouver Canucks, who have a six-to-eight year waiting list for season tickets, are imposing seat limits – including those held by longtime season ticket holders.
Canada’s CBC News reported that Kingsley Bailey, who re-sells event tickets through his business Vancouver Ticket Services, said "he’s been told he won't be allowed to renew 20 out of the 24 Canucks season tickets he holds." Bailey said he’s been supporting the Canucks since 1995.