SAN DIEGO -- Arts Tix is the little booth that could.
San Diego's first half-price ticket service opened in 1986 in a temporary residence in the Spreckels Theatre box office. Hopes were high but there were no guarantees about the future success of the venture.
Now, more than 12 years later, Arts Tix not only has its own booth in Horton Plaza (next to Planet Hollywood) but has sold more than 430,000 tickets and returned more than $6.7 million to participating attractions. In addition, the Arts Tix phone line has received more than 632,000 calls from people inquiring about half-price tickets.
Sponsored by the San Diego Performing Arts League, Arts Tix had its second best year ever in 1997 due to widespread marketing efforts. The League partnered with X-Bach Radio to brodcast a daily "Arts Tix Minute" featuring all shows available at a discount. In addition, X-Bach provides a complete ad schedule to promote League programs and activities.
To reach San Diego's visitor market, a new service for concierges was developed to provide daily fax or E-mail listings of half-price shows to area hotels. Efforts to market on the Internet resulted in key partnerships with San Diego Magazine and Microsoft to provide on-line surfers with updated and timely information about music, theatre and dance events.
For more information, call (619) 497-5000 or see the Website www.sandiego- online.com/sdpal.
--By Willard Manus
Southern California Correspondent