This past weekend we went to an event at Talking Sticks Arena Resort. It was Chris Tomlin's Worship Night in America. I like Chris Tomlin's praise songs he writes. Very talented and inspired. It was more like a worship service before a sermon at church. It was great singing his songs with about 10,000 other people and worshiping God.
It has been years since we have gone out to any event like this. The tickets were reasonably priced for the whole venue and there were tickets even as low as $15.00 a piece (in the "nose bleed" section - i.e. way up high) but their purpose was to make it somewhat affordable for all people to be able to go. We had pretty darn good tickets and they cost $69 each. (remember that price for later on).
During the intermission we got up to stretch our legs, go to the bathroom, and get something to drink. This is the first time in a bathroom where there was a bathroom monitor. I had read about them (an employee who keeps track of what stalls are open and directs people to them. It helps to get the bathroom lines moving so to speak). Boy was she a sharp one and boy that line moved fast.
Then we go to some place to get something to drink. We both wanted water. Water prices are a big contention for me. Especially at movie theaters where a bottle of water is $4.00 or more per bottle.
So imagine my surprise (though I shouldn't have been surprised) when we saw the price for water (ready for this????) was $6.50. Yes $6.50. Water. Dasani water. Here's the clincher. You couldn't bring water bottles into the arena (all bags were checked and we went through security like we were at the airport). Then there were no plastic bottles allowed in the arena. Only cups. So they literally poured the water into a cup and put a lid on it and then you had the privilege of paying $6.50 for it. I kid you not. We were thirsty so of course we shelled out the $6.50. Which is funny if you think about it. We live in a desert and they promote hydration, hydration, hydration. Yet water was $6.50. Unimaginable. We weren't the only ones buying water.
So once seated waiting for the event to restart after intermission, I see that Neil Diamond is going to be there in August. Neil Diamond was the very first concert I went to back in 1976 in San Diego, California. Loved his music, loved the concert. Saw him two other times over the years both when we lived in Billings, Montana. This is advertised as his 50th anniversary tour. He's 76 years old. I thought "heck, it could be fun to go to this."
So we looked at ticket prices.
Those nose bleed seats going for $15.00 for Chris Tomlin were going for $150.
The tickets we had going for $69 were going for $287.
Front row seats were over $2000 EACH. EACH.
VIP tickets (whatever that meant) were $2800 EACH. EACH!
Needless to say, we aren't going to see Neil Diamond. Thing is we could afford the $287 tickets EACH and it wouldn't affect our budget either way. But then I thought $287 times two for perhaps a 2 hour show??? What could $287 times two do to feed the hungry, help the homeless, etc.
I'm sure the concert will sell out. After all its Neil Diamond.
And I'm sure there will be plenty of people paying $6.50 for water.
Just not us.
Just not this time.
Just about never.