By Kristy Koehler, January 23 2019 —
Tickets to the Dinos’ marquee event, the Crowchild Classic, carry a cost for the first time this year. The annual game between the University of Calgary Dinos and the Mount Royal Cougars men’s and women’s hockey teams takes place at the Scotiabank Saddledome and usually draws a boisterous crowd, but costs students $5 to attend this year’s event on Jan. 29.
“It’s our seventh iteration of the game now and I think it’s something that we’ve been contemplating over the last couple of years but really last year it came to a head,” said Dinos athletic director Jason Kerswill.
According to Kerswill, in 2018, 14,000 tickets were given away yet only 10,000 students showed up. Those 4,000 empty seats could have been filled by students who missed out on getting a ticket and walked away disappointed.
“We started talking with Mount Royal about ways to ensure that if we were going to go out there and talk about a sell-out that we’re actually sold out,” Kerswill said. “We were turning away people the week before the game last year and we don’t want to be in that situation again.”
Tickets to all Dinos games are included with student fees and seats can be accessed by showing your student card at the door. The one exception are playoff games, which also cost $5, so there is an existing precedent for charging for the marquee game.
“The way we look at it, it’s less than the price of one beer at the Saddledome, so we’re hoping that if students purchase the ticket for $5 there’s a little bit of skin in the game and they’ll actually come out,” Kerswill said.
Where will that money go? Back to the students, said Kerswill.
“It’s going to go back to student health initiatives on both campuses,” he said. “We haven’t decided exactly where it’s going to go yet but we know it will be reinvested into the students.”
MRU was also on board with the decision, agreeing with U of C that the money should go back to the students.