SBD/August 19, 2011/Franchises

MLS Franchise Notes: Whitecaps Raise Season-Ticket Prices For '12

Whitecaps will play entire '12 season in newly renovated BC Place
Whitecaps CEO Paul Barber on Wednesday said that season-ticket prices "will increase slightly next season to cover higher operating costs" at the renovated BC Place. The increases for '12 range from about 1-3%, meaning a season ticket that cost $319 (all figures Canadian) for 17 MLS games and two Nutrilite Canadian Championship matches this year "will rise to $329 for the 2012 season while a $418 season ticket will increase to $429." The expansion club "has about 15,500 season ticket holders, who will receive an invoice and renewal information by email this week." The Whitecaps own the worst record in MLS, but Barber said that the club "has received just two emails from season ticket holders complaining about being asked to renew already after such a tough season on the field" (VANCOUVER SUN, 8/18).

GIVEN A RED CARD: Sporting KC Exec VP/Operations Chris Wyche Thursday said that four fans "were removed" from Livestrong Sporting Park Wednesday night after Sporting KC G Jimmy Nielsen was "struck in the face by the piece of a bobblehead doll thrown from the stands." Wyche said that the club "used its high-resolution cameras to identify two men, both wearing Sporting KC gear, who threw objects onto the field." The team is scheduled to have one more bobblehead night this season -- on Sept. 28 -- and Sporting KC VP/Communications Rob Thomson said that "no decision has been made on whether the club will change the distribution of the bobbleheads or cancel the promotion altogether." Club officials "will meet -- likely this week -- to discuss the matter" (K.C. STAR, 8/19).

IN ORDER TO FORM A MORE PERFECT UNION: GOAL.com's Christopher Savino reported "more than two hundred members of Philadelphia Union supporters group Sons of Ben were at PPL Park on Wednesday evening for the first annual Supporters Summit hosted by the club." MLS Commissioner Don Garber attended the meeting, joined by Philly Union CEO Nick Sakiewicz, coach Peter Nowak, F Sebastien Le Toux and G Faryd Mondragon. In light of "several recent events," Sakiewicz "discussed the sale of supporters section tickets on sites such as StubHub who are not able to control who those tickets are ultimately sold to." He said, "We cannot prevent it. ... What we can do though is we can police our stands for people who do purchase those tickets on StubHub and make the owner of those tickets, the season ticket holder, responsible for that. A good example of that was the Colorado game where we had a fight that broke out that was started by some people that bought the tickets" (GOAL.com, 8/18).
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