Cincinnati Lifts 25-Year-Old Seating Ban

Brian Cady brianinatlanta2001 at
Thu Aug 5 06:11:27 CDT 2004

>From Associated Press at:

Cincinnati Lifts 25-Year-Old Seating Ban
(AP, 08/04/2004 8:48 PM)

The city council on Wednesday lifted a nearly 25-year
ban on concert general admission seating that was
imposed after 11 fans were crushed to death at a
performance by the rock group The Who.

The unanimous decision came after council members said
some performers were skipping Cincinnati because they
could not have general admission seating, often known
as festival seating. They said Cincinnati was the only
one among the top 50 cities for concert venues that
did not allow festival seating.
The fans were killed Dec. 3, 1979, when The Who was
preparing for a concert at Riverfront Coliseum, now
U.S. Bank Arena. The deaths and dozens of injuries
occurred when fans rushed at closed doors during a
late sound check because they thought the show had

Festival seating appeals to promoters because it is
first-come, first-served, allowing the most
enthusiastic fans to get near the stage and generate
excitement for the rest of the crowd. Some performers
and bands insist on a festival seating area near the

A one-time exemption to Cincinnati's ban was granted
for a Bruce Springsteen concert in 2002, and no
problems resulted.

City officials said the new system will limit the
number of tickets for the general admission area based
on the square footage of the concert location. Tickets
will be sold before the day of the show, and all doors
to the festival seating area will have to be opened
two hours before the concert.

Ushers and security personnel also will have to be in
place before the doors are opened, and a written
evacuation plan will be required.

-Brian in Atlanta
The Who This Month!

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