The City Beat got attendance numbers for Ralph Engelstad Arena today and it looks like the numbers have dropped quite a bit.
Chris Semrau, the director of events there, said the year before there was a world curling event and maybe some more concerts.
I checked our archives and Sugarland was here in 2008-2009 as was Reba McEntire and Kelly Clarkson. The year before there was Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood. So maybe attendance was not so hot in 2008-2009 or smaller events that the Ralph might have booked it decided not to or couldn’t.
It’s worth pointing out that the Ralph doesn’t get a subsidy and doesn’t have an economic impact mission like the Alerus Center, so people like Chris have to be real careful what event they book. This means they just won’t book some events. When the economy takes a turn for the worse and people feel less secure spending, they have to be even more careful.
Here’s the attendance data from the press release:
2004-2005 was the year of the World Junior Hockey Championship, so there’s no beating that. The average attendance since 2002-2003 was 462,064. I think the Ralph counted 2001-2002, but that’s not a full year, so maybe I shouldn’t use that year.
Anyway, hockey was still great. Half of the top 10 most attended games happened last year:
A total of 222,655 attended. Average attendance was 11,719.