The Vindicator gave out 3,300 YSU football tickets during the fair.
By IAN HILL
VINDICATOR STAFF WRITER
CANFIELD -- Chilly weather didn't stop some local residents from waiting in line up to 45 minutes Monday morning for free tickets to a Youngstown State University football game.
"We're here, we might as well get tickets," said Jim Lagese of Austintown, as he waited in line outside of The Vindicator tent at the Canfield Fair. Lagese added that getting the tickets at the fair is a tradition for his family.
"We come out every Labor Day and get breakfast and get tickets," Lagese said. The temperature was about 60 degrees when he was waiting in line.
During the fair, The Vindicator gave out a total of 3,300 free tickets to YSU's Oct. 20 homecoming game against Illinois State University. The tickets were given out in batches of 300 at 9 a.m. and 7 p.m. Thursday through Monday during the fair. One giveaway also took place Wednesday.
To get tickets, people had to fill out a survey from the newspaper and place it in a plastic box. The surveys are used to help determine what type of news and advertisements are published in the newspaper.
Lines: At times, lines for the tickets began forming up to an hour and a half before the giveaways. The lines were among the longest for an event that wasn't a concert at the fair.
About 50 people were in line Monday morning when the 9 a.m. giveaway began.
Ed Vukovich of Youngstown said he was willing to wait in line to ensure that he would get tickets for reserved seating at the game.
"The first ones get the reserved tickets," Vukovich said. "Anybody knows that."
Each batch of tickets given away at the fair included 50 tickets for reserved seating followed by 150 general admission tickets and 100 standing-room-only tickets.
Early bird: Karen Peschione of Struthers said she wanted to get in line early because, "somebody already said the lines get long." Peschione was the first in line for Sunday's 7 p.m. giveaway.
About 100 people were in the line by 6:30 p.m.
Peschione said she started the line about 5:45 p.m. When asked if she was a YSU football fan, she replied, "I've lived here all my life, I'm 42, so yeah."
Yet, Peschione added that, "I haven't been to a YSU game in a long time." She said her brother and nephew attended the university.
"Hopefully, I'll get decent seats," she said.
Bob Jones of Youngstown also described himself as a YSU fan. He said that while he had never attended a game at YSU's Stambaugh Stadium, he had watched the football team's playoff games on television.
Jones was second in line behind Peschione on Saturday evening. He said he started waiting for the giveaway at 5:45 p.m. to make sure he wouldn't be at the end of the line.
"You look down there, and [the line is] all the way to the end of the grandstand," Jones said.
Gary Yancsurak of Youngstown said he didn't mind the wait. Yancsurak was in the middle of the line Saturday evening.
"I'm not doing anything else. I'm here. I might as well stand in line," he said. "Plus, [the tickets] are free."