Wednesday, July 18, 2007

A few things bothering me

I'm a season ticket holder. I'm in my second season as one. I've been coming to games though since the 96 season. Some seasons more than others. Some seasons I've been to every game at home. I see the benefits of being a season ticket holder, supporting the team, every game. I also see the benefits that are supposed to be awarded to season ticket holders. Normally season ticket holders will pay less for their tickets as a whole since they buy them in advance and as season ticket holders. Some times there are deals involved as well for season ticket holders, like free copies of the current media guide or discounts on merchandise. These seem to be the normal things that are expected with being a season ticket holder.

That's not all true when it comes to the way the Wizards are doing things lately. Before the season started, the Wizards said that there would be the 3 pricing structures, 1 for reserved seating, 1 for General admission, and 1 for the Cauldron, which would be the same price as GA. They said there would only be deviations from these ticket prices for special event tickets, that the team would sell. Well in an effort to build the size of the Cauldron for one game, the Wizards offered $10 tickets into the Cauldron. That went over so well in that one game, that this promotion now occurs for every game. So tell me, what was the point of buying season tickets in the Cauldron in the first place, when I could have bought the same ticket for a lesser price? What's the incentive for me being a season ticket holder in that regard, when I'm paying 1/3rd more than people that bought their ticket by 3pm the Friday before the game? This isn't the way to keep season ticket holders in the Cauldron coming back as season ticket holders. I've spoken with a few that have already said they won't be renewing their season tickets and will instead wait for whatever promotion the team does next year as it will likely be cheaper then season tickets. Yes the front office has said that they'd find a way to reimburse those season ticket holders, but how? The discount on merchandise? Yes, let's discount merchandise by $5 making it seem more appealing to buy it so that the team gets more money. The rumor I've heard is that those season ticket holders will be allowed to buy next year's jersey at cost. How nice of them, getting us to spend more money to show their appreciation.

The other thing that we as season ticket holders were told, was that this season there were going to be few, if any, comp tickets to fans this season. That sounded like good news, for too many years, Hunt Sports Group had been comping tons of tickets and reporting that as actual attendance, when in reality, few of the comps ever showed. So this was a practice we thought was done with. Then came in La Porra, the Wizards, mainly Argentine, supporters group. That added great atmosphere and noise to the Cauldron, making it a very fun place to be during the course of the game. They always made a grand entrance about 9-10 minutes into the game, marching in. Last Saturday, they didn't come in until almost the 30th minute, and that started to make some in the section wonder why they'd taken so long. Apparently the Argentine's were being comped tickets to the games. I thought the purpose of comps was that you gave them to a group for one game, in the hopes that they'd enjoy it so much that they'd come back again and buy their own. That didn't turn out to be the truth with the Argentine's, who had been getting comped tickets all season. But now it appears they will not be coming back, as the team is not going to be giving them comps any more.

My question is, why do they get comps and the rest of the Cauldron doesn't? They help to bring just as much atmosphere to the section as the Argentine's do, and many of them have been doing it since 1996, so what makes the Argentine's so deserving of these tickets and not the rest of people adding to the atmosphere?

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