Kingston 2020 Tim Hortons Brier ticket confusion continues

Of the people who put down deposits for the 2020 Tim Hortons Brier in Kingston, not enough have paid for the remainder of their full ticket packages, the Kingston Brier committee says.

Kingston will be hosting the national curling tournament next year, and organizers are hoping those who have already put down a $50 deposit to “save a seat” will honour their commitment by spending several hundred more for their curling ticket packages.

The city won the bid for a number of reasons including fan interest, which was partly expressed by the number of deposits put down for the 2020 Brier.

To win the bid for the Brier, Tourism Kingston set a goal to sell 2,020 $50 deposits for the curling championship.

Kingston surpassed that goal and won the bid for the Brier in late 2018. But since securing the 2020 championships, it seems that some people who put down their deposits were unaware of what they were purchasing.

“Right from the get-go, when we brought out this Save Your Seat program, the message was clear: you had to read it or had to listen that the $50 was towards a full event ticket package,” said Ken Thompson, Kingston’s Brier committee vice-chair.

The full event packages are between $559.75 and $585.25 and can only be purchased through the Leon’s Centre box office. The $50 deposit does not allow the purchaser to buy tickets to individual draws, and the sum will not be refunded to those who do not want to pay to attend every Brier 2020 event.

Thompson said only about a quarter of the 2,360 reserved event packages have been paid for in full.

“Now, that’s not even close to being good. When St. John’s ran this program when they were going for the Brier, their conversion rate was 82 per cent. We don’t expect to get near 82 per cent, but 50 would be great,” Thompson said.

The committee has been working on getting as many people to convert their deposits to full packages.

“The box office at Leon’s Centre has already contacted most people either once or twice, left phone messages. The three vice-chairs have split up the list, and we’re endeavouring to follow up with everybody on the list,” Thompson added.

The previously set April 20 deadline to convert deposits into packages has been dropped, but Thompson is encouraging those who put their deposits down to buy the full packages since individual seats are being scooped up in some of the best sections.

—With files from Alexandra Mazur and Kraig Krause

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