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Volume 24 No. 117

Sponsorships Advertising Marketing

     Yesterday, the House Subcommittee on Transportation and
Hazardous Material began hearings on "a bill mandating that the
public be fully informed of any charges tacked onto an event
ticket" through advertising disclaimers.  But, according to
Richard Leiby in this morning's WASHINGTON POST, "the Ticket Fee
Disclosure Act, introduced by powerful Michigan Democrat John
Dingell, seems more like a scripted piece of political bluster
than an actual blow against the allegedly monopolistic practices
of the Ticketmaster empire."  Ticketmaster apparently supports
the legislation, and says "it already divulges its service fees"
in telephone scripts and on tickets.  Ned Goldstein, Ticketmaster
VP:  "We feel the consumer has the right to the information."
Bill Wood of the U.S. Public Interest Research Group:
"Disclosing to someone that you are extorting them does not solve
the problem of extortion."  According to Goldstein, Ticketmaster
"only makes a time on each ticket it handles" (Richard Leiby,
WASHINGTON POST, 9/30).

     Maple Leaf Gardens will host a regular season NCAA
basketball game between Georgetown and Memphis State on December
10.  Mary Ann Kim of Del Wilber & Associates (DWA), which is
organizing the event:  "We decided on Georgetown because they
were ranked among the top three NCAA teams in the Toronto area in
terms of recognition.  Georgetown's merchandise outsells that of
other schools 3-to-1" (Craig Daniels, TORONTO SUN, 9/30).  DWA
President Peter Allemang:  "Basketball is close to being the
prestige sport in high school here" (Jim Byers, TORONTO STAR,
9/30).

     Disney's recent surprise decision to abandon Manassas, VA,
as the site of Disney's America was based largely on the
recognition that the company's "family-friendly image was being
threatened by environmentalists, historians, and community
leaders."  Disney Board Member, Robert A.M. Stern:  "There's a
lot of money going into Disney's America and when you invest that
much in a project, the image of people standing around with
picket signs on the day you open doesn't sit well."  The board,
led by Disney Chair Michael Eisner, reached the decision
unanimously "after less than an hour's debate" (Spayd & Farhi,
WASHINGTON POST, 9/30).
     PRAISE FOR EISNER:  Richard Moe, president of the National
Trust for Historic Preservation and an opponent to the project,
characterized Disney as "patriots" for their decision.  Moe:
"It's never easy for a company to reverse its position on such a
highly visible issue.  It's a sign of great courage on Michael
Eisner's part to do this and I commend him for it" (WASHINGTON
POST, 9/30).

     Citing "pockmarked putting greens," many country clubs are
considering banning metal spikes.  But golfers and golf-shoe
makers aren't happy.  Still, McNeil Engineering, one spiked and
cleated shoe maker in MA, "is rushing more turf-friendly shoes to
market" (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 9/30).... Ronald McDonald
Children's Charities announced it is dropping the Michael
Jordan/RMCC Classic, held in Chicago the past two summers,
because Jordan's baseball commitment will not allow him to
participate (CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, 9/30)....Anheuser-Busch begin
distribution Monday of its first "red beer," Red Wolf Lager (N.Y.
TIMES, 9/30).

     Tetra Plastics Inc., which developed the plastic "Airsole"
for Nike and is a supplier to K2 Snow Ski Inc., has announced
that it will build a 220,000-square-foot plant at the Missouri
Research Park and expand its R&D department.  The company was
flooded out last year and "had plenty of reason to join Nike" in
Oregon, but "incentives from Missouri's Department of Economic
Development were crucial to Tetra's decision" to stay in
Missouri.  State aid included $263,000 in investment and job
creation task credits, and $750,000 to build a new highway
interchange.  The company will also save $600,000 in utility
charges over five years, and is exempt from real estate taxes.
Tetra expects sales of $37M this year and "has 23 new products
under development just for Nike, which accounts for 55 percent of
the company's sales" (Fred Faust, ST. LOUIS POST DISPATCH, 9/30).