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HOT TICKETS: Elton John fans sell out Covelli

Published: Fri, March 12, 2010 @ 11:00 a.m.
  Elton John Concert Sells Out

Tickets for the May 1 Elton John concert at the Covelli Center in Youngstown, OH were sold out in a matter of minutes.

Tickets for the May 1 Elton John concert at the Covelli Center in Youngstown, OH were sold out in a matter of minutes.

Like a “Candle in the Wind,” tickets for Elton John’s concert at the Covelli Centre disappeared quickly.

At 10:03 a.m., three minutes after tickets went on sale today, you couldn’t buy a pair online at ticketmaster.com.

It actually was better at the Covelli Centre box office, where about 175 people waited to buy tickets for the May 1 concert.

The $39 and $89 tickets were sold out in less than four minutes with about 25 people buying the less-expensive seats.

But there were $139 tickets left 30 minutes after they went on sale at the box office.

That’s because the center held back tickets to accommodate those at the box office willing to pay the high price, said Eric Ryan, the facility’s executive director.

That was about 50 people because when it was announced the less-expensive seats were sold out, more than 100 people walked away.

For the complete story, read Saturday’s Vindicator and Vindy.com


1Siouxi(122 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

I was online at 10 am exactly and was shut out. I kept trying for awhile but gave up when I realized by then they were all gone.
I thought buying online was the best way to get tickets? Apparently not...

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2OhioLikeThis(1 comment)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

I stick up for Youngstown on a daily basis, but it's things like this that frustrate me the most. The people who "operate" the Covelli Centre already had those tickets sold to friends, family, "important" people, etc. Youngstown is trying so hard to gain its integrity back, and yet things like this keep happening. I'll keep sticking up for Youngstown, but the Covelli Centre is on its own now.

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3Ctown(115 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

For those that didn't get tickets: I'm sure the concert will be great however at least you won't have to drive up Market Street at midnight through the ghetto on the way back to the suburbs. Stay safe....boycott Youngstown.

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4WalterSobchack(19 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

Just like I said yesterday... The exact same thing that happened for the Pavlik fight. How is it possible that at exactly 10am I was already told "there were no more tickets available"? The scalper's re-sellers obviously had no problem buying multiple tickets! The box office should have a pre-sale to local residents for at least an hour before tickets go onsale to the public. I would be very interested to see how many of these tickets were actually available "to the public" and how many went to ticket re-sellers.

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5WalterSobchack(19 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

I think the vindy should do a little investigating on this issue. It would be interesting to interview concert goers the night of the show to ask them how much they paid for their tickets. I bet very few people actually paid face value and the majority got ripped off by scalpers.

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6north_side_girl(214 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

everyone seems surprised about this, like it doesn't happen at EVERY VENUE where there is a sure-to-be-sellout.
i lucked out with pavlik tickets, because i knew generally how the site worked and knew what i would have to fill in and how long it would take. but the q, mellon, pretty much any venue anywhere has the same crapshoot when it comes to getting tickets for a sellout event. scalpers, freebies, they all figure in. don't make it a youngstown thing, it's more like a stupid ticket/concert promotion industry thing.
i'm getting pearl jam tickets on monday, and i'm pretty sure i wont get close to the stage no matter how many seconds it takes me to fill in the blanks.

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744girl(14 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

They probably hold so many tickets back for the artist and radio give aways, but all shouldn't be gone.

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8dasani1971(22 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

This is utterly ridiculous. Its all who you know and the heads of the covelli probably already had all the tickets and sold them to scalpers. How else do the scalpers get them before they go on sale? Think about it.

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9lori3031(1 comment)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

I have three seats, I am looking to get rid of for the concert.

Seats 109
12 - 14
Seating Chart

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10amydund(4 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

what makes me mad is i was on right at 10 clicked to get tickets got to the screen i had tickets in section 201 went to go and click for them to send me the tickets through mail and an error came up what the heck im sooo madd i can't even begins to tell u. i had the tickets right there now i cant get anything unless i wanna pay way more then what the covelli center was selling them for cause of all the people who bought extra tickets and decide to sell them for more then they are supposed to... just soo upset about all of this i'm hoping they will be selling some more that they just held off selling all of them at one time

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11amydund(4 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

lori how much are u selling them for

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12amydund(4 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

never mind i wanted the cheapest tickets

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13Ctown(115 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

Serious question: I know that dealers are allowed to sell tickets above face value, however are individuals allowed to do this? For example, I've been to Indian's games where people were arrested for scalping. lori3031, if you bought these tickets just to try and make money on them, then I hope you eat them. Some fan probably would have loved to have them at face value. Why ruin it for the honest Joe who just wanted to see a once in a lifetime concert in Ytown?

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14mytown(4 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

Lori how much are you selling the tickets for?

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15ytownpunk(26 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

A lot of times the promoter had the ability to offload tickets before they went on sale to the general public. Belkin Productions out of Cleveland was notorious for this. They dressed it up like some fan club or something. You paid $200 a year for access to "all the best seats" before they went on sale to the public. Limits for these orders would be absurd too. Like 10 or 12 tickets per member.

Now I don't know if this practice still exists or how promoters fit into the modern concert industry, but I do know that Ticketmaster has been caught dumping tickets to scalping agencies (checkout the Bruce Springsteen incident from 2009) before they went on sale to the public fairly recently.

And for the media outlets who told people the best way to get tickets would be online, don't do that next time. If I were going for tickets today, I would have CALLED Ticketmaster right at 10 a.m.

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16YSUGRAD(134 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

It's supply and demand, simple economics. If you really want to go step up and pay a little more.

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17PHISHIE(105 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

Now, Now calm down people. You need to realize that Elton is big time entertainment. He writes the songs that he sings. Consequently, he has a huge fan base. His current tour takes him to Reading, Youngstown and Toledo. not Cleveland, Columbus or Cinncy not even Akron.......So, guess what people from a huge regional area with millions of people in the regions are and were vying for tickets.........most likely most people seeing the act will not be from Youngstown.

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18WalterSobchack(19 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

Hey YSUGRAD (lol yeah right)... That is not the issue here. The tickets were gone BEFORE they went on sale to the public. It's false advertising if nothing else.
and YTOWNPUNK... I was on the phone and on line, couldn't get through either way.

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19CandyfromCanfield(172 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

I called Ticketmaster AND tried to get them online. Seriously, I don't know anyone who got tickets to this. I was online right at 10 am, reloading my screen every 5 seconds or so. I got right on and nothing was available. This is some kind of scam...I'd love to hear what Eric Ryan has to say about this. Disgraceful!

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20leftyompton4life(79 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

I got on at 10:08am...and knewwww I was F"D

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21DaisyBuchanan(12 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

This type of thing happens everywhere for concerts that are sure to be sold out. It has nothing to do with Youngstown or the powers that be at the Covelli Centre. It's a small venue and is going to sell out almost immediately. This man had one of the most profitable tours last year.

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22One_Who_Stayed(240 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

Hey Candy, what Eric Ryan would say is the same thing anyone who runs a facility would say. You've got a bazillion people vying for 7000 tickets. . . Your chances of getting one even if you get on at 10:00 and 1 second is still next to nothing!

Sorry for your luck, but you're looking at a small supply and a huge demand.

For those of you crying foul and bleating on about Youngstown corruption - get over it. Your chances were next to nothing to begin with. Its not corruption, its supply and demand playing out and you lost.

It's going to be a great show, and kudos to the folks that brought it here.

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23north_side_girl(214 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

ew, i don't get how people will spend tons of money to go to Vegas, which is now basically like a giant, hot sweaty mall. but Valleyites think getting a comp buffet at the Flamingo is like going to the Louvre.

spend small for a simple good time, spend big if you're actually going someplace that doesn't sell nudie postcards with the name of the city at every single store.

have fun, ticketholders!

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24PHISHIE(105 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

WhaaaaaaaWhhhhhhhaaaaaaaaaa, WhAAAAAAAAAAAAA I want a ticket I want a ticket Whannnnnnnnnn........tears droping like rain..................Whann Whann I want a ticket .......

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25beatlesfan819(2 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

It is not illegal to ell tickets for a higher price, as long as you are not on the property of the venue where the event is taking place. Look at such sites as Stub Hub and ebay.
Brokers have computer software that allows them to bypass typing in the security words and this allows them to get in and grab tickets while others are still trying to type the security words and search for tickets.

Nobody at he Covelli Centre did anything wrong. There were thousands of people trying to get tickets at the same time and only 7000 were available.
Elton plays major arenas and stadiums for the most part, so these tickets were expected to go very fast.

I was lucky enough to score 6 great seats next to the stage for Elton.

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26Ctown(115 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

To Maxi,

Nice response to NS Girl. You hit the nail on the head with each point. Take care.

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27beatlesfan819(2 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

Yes it is. Brokers (scalpers) will fill the orders as they buy the tickets when they go on sale. They are not forcing people to pay the high prices, they are providing a service and fans have the option to buy great seats at an insane price.

Not fair to fans, but just business I guess.
There and thousands of brokers across the country who all do the same thing.

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28mickd(10 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

I have managed to get front row tickets for shows including The Police, Kiss, Prince, and other huge acts... yet I couldn't get a single ticket for Elton in Youngstown? Pathetic.

That was not right that the Covelli Centre decided to delay the internet sales. That threw off people like me who were ready to buy at 10. Who gives a s*it if one of their friends in line was waiting to buy tickets, I was ready to buy the $139 tickets.

I'll go see Elton elsewhere and have a better time in a better city.

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29studentmom(6 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

The assumptions here are terrible. It is obvious many of you have never bought tickets for a highly desired event. I did get tickets this morning on the ticket master website. It did take many tries and changing the quanity of tickets needed. I was able to purchase 3 tickets and I am not anyone with any kind of pull nor do I know anyone with the Covelli Centre. I am just a local resident that wanted to go to the concert and was one of the lucky ones to get some tickets. I have been to the Covelli Center for many events and I hope they continue to their success. The reason some had early tickets is because the Elton John fan club had a presale yesterday and many of those tickets were bought and sold through scalpers. Nearly ALL fan clubs and/or radio stations get a limited amount of tickets for their fans. Everything that happens in Youngstown doesnt have to be made out to be evil or corrupt. Now, I can't wait til May 1st Rock on Y-Town!!!

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30kayceekay2k(4 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

I've been checking the ticket broker sites since Monday for this concert at Covelli. They've been available all week & ranged from $100 to $1000 per ticket. So- you know tons of tickets were already bought by brokers before we got a chance to buy them outright this AM via Ticketmaster or boxoffice. I wonder how many of those 7000 were already bought before 10 am today.It's always like this with really huge stars/groups.Makes me mental.

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31AKAFR1(322 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

I hope when they ask the taxpayers of Mahoning County to payoff the debt of the Covelli Centre that they put it on TicketMaster. If demand is that great, they would not have any problem selling all the tickets to area residents.

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32valleyred(1103 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

In my eyes, this is a good problem to have. He wasn't playing in Akron, Pittsburgh, Cleveland, or Erie so it made sense the 6 million people within an hours drive of Youngstown would all be vying for 7,000 tickets at 10am.

Folks, this kind of stuff happens everywhere in America at every venue, not just in Youngstown.

I am very happy to see this even sell-out so quickly because I truly believe it will lead to even bigger acts in the future. Downtown will be packed that night!

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33boardmanneedschange(364 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

Ticketmaster did the same thing to Springsteen fans... go look at ticketsnow.com (their sister site) and see how they simply rape consumers for every dollar by having their ticketbrokers buy them before the onsale and jack the prices five times high.. Anyone who pays for concerts nowadays should expect to get hosed....Suckers....Enjoy your seven dollar 12 oz draft beers.....

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34Lifes2Short(3882 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

First off, to the fools that said, "this concert won't even sell out" and Elton John is washed up and all the other negative stuff, where are you now? How come no comments?

To the other ones that seem like they never brought a ticket in there life, blaming Youngstown and the Covelli Center and corrupt this and that and some explaining to do and it's a Youngstown thing, you must not get out much. Those comments are pitiful. Get out more or try to buy a ticket to a high demand show.

To the Vegas is the best thing ever, it's not all that. There are a lot more places I would rather go then there. It's nothing but a tourist trap just like Florida. But to each there own.

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35kids2028(87 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

To C-town

GET A LIFE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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36spin(15 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

I went on line right at 10am, wanted 6 tickets and NOTHING I then tried 4, Nothing two Nothing so I then Got One Ticket, then one more so I got two tickets in separate rows, One for me and one for my husband. May 1st is our 6 year wedding anniversary! We get to spend it with the music of Elton John But we wont be sitting together. But YES I got them on line ticket master about 10:05am.

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37Ctown(115 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

To Kids2028,

I have a life. Now get back to your $7 an hour job at WalMart.

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38north_side_girl(214 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

oh lord ...
YES ive been to vegas. it sucks. if you want a 24-hour party with glamorous nightclubs and shows and cuisine, you can go to reykjavik, iceland. used to be a 3-hour plane ride from NYC. not as sweaty.
i know what LOVE is, but i remember the beatles as a band and not a cirque du soleil show. or a target commercial.
YES i go downtown all the time. was just there last night.
YES i go to the covelli. blue man group played there too.
YES architecture is freaking amazing. but after seeing two wonders of the world, giant slabs of concrete and bridges leave me hollow. i've seen the colorado from afar, it's very nice. ill be kayaking in new mexico with friends later this year hopefully.

it just seems dispiriting the lack of travel aspirations people around here have sometimes. vegas and obx seem to be the only destinations worth traveling to for them. there are much more beautiful places in the world that don't put their name on a shot glass. if you're spending $500+ it makes sense to do something more inspiring.

in closing, spending a few bucks close to home is great. i do it all the time. going to a cleve/pitt show adds up to more once you count gas, parking, drinks at the venue, etc. we're lucky to have more things close to home.

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39juj(1 comment)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

I agree with most people in the area who say the whole Elton John concert ticket issue was said and done before it started. I was also online at 10am and shut out for over half and hour. Something just doesn't seem right here, and I think that the people in this town aren't dumb enough to fall for this one!

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40SAD(1 comment)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

Covelli can keep their tickets! I was on Ticketmaster at 10am also and could not get even 1 ticket, but they are all over the internet for sale at $200 to $800. There should have been more tickets for sale for honest locals like us! I think we have been had!

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41YSUGRAD(134 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

Hey (WalterSobchack) why the need to doubt my education. Perhaps you're not used to buying tickets for popular events on Ticketmaster. This happens with all kinds of shows where ticketmaster sells the tix. Not sure why you think false advertising is happening. I saw shame on the venue for not limiting tickets for walk up's to two each. I love when people who don't know what they are talking about open their mouth.

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42WalterSobchack(19 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

Hey (YSUGRAD), let's start with your punctuation. Questions, linguistic expressions used to make requests for information, should end with a question mark. They look like this --> ?
Next: "I saw shame on the venue for not limiting tickets for walk up's to two each." Really? You saw shame on the venue? That's interesting.
I apologize for doubting your education. Your grammatical skills illustrate that you did in fact attend and quite possibly graduate from YSU.
I suggest you do a little research before running your mouth. Google "Ticketmaster, FTC complaints" and you will find multiple stories about unfair business practices and deceptive sales tactics. This is nothing new.

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43vinglass(295 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

I don't get it!! I never bought tickets on-line before , but at 10:05, I got 6 Elton John tickets with no problems...

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44Nunya22(315 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

To everyone who bought tickets congrats and enjoy yourselves.

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45dreamcatcher52(140 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

I know how TM works, so I am not surprised at brokers having tickets, "none available" coming up within minutes, etc. I have only one complaint. People were told to stay home in their "fuzzy socks" and not come to the box office and that their best chance to get tickets was online. Then the Covelli Center turns around and HOLDS BACK a certain number of tickets just for box office sales. Well, make that 2 complaints - they should have had a 4 ticket limit for such a big name at a small arena. Anyway, I pulled up 2 in section 208 at about 10:05 but threw them back because they wanted $97 each for them and they were pretty much behind the stage. I would have bought them for the $39, but not for $97.

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46steveo(2 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

I want to thank Mr. Ryan for explaining how big concerts work. In the past I have only attended concerts /sporting events in Cleveland, Pittsburgh and even in Youngstown. I will be sure to follow Mr. Ryan’s sage advice if I ever decide to attend a” big concert” at the Covelli Center again. Thank you again Mr. Ryan

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47TeresaB(82 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

concerning the Elton John Fan club tickets. I am a member and purchased my tickets through the fan club, but I guarantee you that NONE of the fan club tickets are being sold online. Our tickets are WILL-CALL only, We don't even know the seats (only that they are section 101,102,103 and somewhere in the first 8 rows), until we pick them up, no sooner than 1 hour before the concert, at the venue. We have to show Id and the credit card that was used to purchase the tickets, in order to pick them up even then. Elton John has taken great measures to insure that noone uses his fan club as a place to rip off his fans.


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48vinglass(295 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

Dear Maxi...What I don't get is this...If there were no tickets for sale as many people are saying, how did I log on and get 6??

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49Nunya22(315 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

To the people anger over trying to buy them online at ticket master. I'm not sure if this is a possiblitiy or anything just a thought maybe there was way to many people on the system and made a error for alot of people while some were able to get them around 10.

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50simonharper(1 comment)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

Before anyone gets hot under the collar, I don't live in Youngstown and haven't for 20 years. Since my mother was working and my father doesn't even touch the computer I logged on to get them tickets through Tickemaster. Yes, I received the same error for about 2 minutes that nothing was available but I kept trying. Able to get 4 tickets @$39.

One thing I would like to say, you are lucky you are able to go directly to the box office and avoid the tm fees. In most major cities tm runs even the box offices.

I've seen Elton twice and he is an amazing performer. Congratulations to those who were able to get tickets no matter the price you paid it will be worth every penny.

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51wineywoman(78 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

I hope all who were able to get tickets enjoy the concert. I was not fortunate enough to be one of you. I will however, look up Elton Johns' concert schedule, and see him elsewhere. Just because I won't see him in Youngstown, doesn't mean I won't see him at all. Who knows, perhaps another show will be added because of the overwhelming response. If not, I'll just pick another place and see him there. It won't be the first time I've traveled to a show. I can't understand why some people act as though this is a one time only deal. Enlighten me if you can.

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52Thalia(3 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

I am not going to the Covelli center again for an event after this. I was on right at 10am and normally it places you in an online line to wait for the tickets. There was no line and were no tickets. I have gotten tickets for Buffett, which sell out in 10 min, on Ticketmaster. I bet they had all of 10-20 tickets for sale through Ticketaster, just so they can say they were for sale to the public. Meanwhile, all of the brokers have all of the tickets for sale at much higher prices, so many people from this area can not go. So much for a what could have been a good thing. Elton comes to small venues now with reasonable prices and Covelli ruins it. I know several other people who tried at 10 for tickets both via Ticketmaster and the phone and no one found any.Thanks Covelli!

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53Lifes2Short(3882 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

You people sound like "spoiled kids" who don't get there way.

As the Rolling Stones would sing:

"You can't get always get what you want...."


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54dtkach44(5 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

I did not read all the comments, but want to say that I was on at 10 and couldn't get a ticket at any price. This is ridiculous and I really think Ticketmaster should be put out of business, they are just a monopoly like Walmart, who I avoid also. Then again if you go to the scalper sites you can get a ticket behind the stage for 150 bucks. I like the Covelle Center and have seen quite a few concerts there always a good show and not a bad seat but how can you be blocked out at 10 exactly and I kept trying for a half hour before I finally gave up.

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55WalterSobchack(19 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

Thank you YSUGRAD for once again illustrating my point. You are quite the intellectual!

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56dasani1971(22 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

The covelli center probably already had given out 3/4 of the tickets. Theres no other reason to tell me that in 4 minutes the whole arena sells out. Utterly ridiculous and another shot in the arm to youngstown. Blah.

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57spin(15 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

I was able to get two tickets at 10:05, threw ticket master, One ticket being on the floor center stage, Wonder how I was able to get these after 10am? I really wanted 6 but those were sold out. I will be at the show and I bet the arena will be half full since everyone is protesting internet scalping sales. Those scalpers will be shut OUT!

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58Lifes2Short(3882 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

"Utterly ridiculous and another shot in the arm to youngstown. Blah."

Only Youngstown, huh? You really need a life.

"I will be at the show and I bet the arena will be half full........"

If I was a betting man I would back my paycheck for the next 10 years on that. It'll be full. Unreal.

You people never ever must've had any experience with buying tickets. You must really live a sheltered life....Such pitiful comments on this.....sad the mentality of some people.

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59computer_rick(137 comments)posted 6 years, 3 months ago

This is all because of Liberals and Government takeovers and Obama and Democrats....

Right Stan?

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