To begin, let me inform you I am a paraplegic. I was heading to the game to meet up with a friend, but wound up running late.
It was the opening day for the Portland Timbers' 2010 season at PGE Park. I arrived about 15 minutes into the game and proceeded to the ticket booths, but there were signs outside saying "Sold Out". I thought to myself that there must be wheelchair seating still available so I sent my friend who was already inside a text asking him to survey how many empty wheelchair spots there are. He replied, "dozens and dozens in multiple sections are empty".
With that information in hand, I informed the gate security of my discovery and asked if I can still get a ticket. The employee ran down the corridor and saw for herself that there are indeed many spots open and prompted me to head to the main ticket window. Next I'm at the window purchasing a ticket, but I was told all general admission accessible seating is sold out, but I can get one of the expensive reserved seating sections. I didn't think anything of it and went ahead to purchase the more expensive ticket.
So I proceeded to section 107, which is the area my friend was sitting. Section 107 is in the middle of general admission, which stretches from section 102 to 111. It caught my curiosity when I noticed there were multitudes of empty wheelchair seats in every one of the wheelchair sections spanning the general admission area.
I wound up voicing my concern at the ticket office to get the answer of, "the director of ticket operations said all wheelchair general admission are sold out for this game".
This raises my brow...doesn't it for you too? I call BS on them announcing the game being sold out. I'd venture to guess they said all "general admission" tickets are sold out as a ploy to drum up hype for future ticket sales. As you can see in the pictures attached, the sections are almost completely empty!
What is your take? Why would a venue deny general admission wheelchair seating when there are clearly plenty available. I highly doubt all the empty spots are season ticket holders who just happened to miss the opening game against one of the best teams in the league.
Oh, and another thing. I mentioned all this to the usher for section 107. I told the usher, "the Director of Ticket Operations said all the wheelchair seating in general admission is sold out"...the usher replied..."they lied".