The Tampa Bay Lightning are inviting fans to help them "Bring it Back" with a special fan event open to the public on Saturday, April 3, 2010 at the St. Pete Times Forum from 10:30 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. The event will feature an open practice, as well as the entire Lightning team signing autographs for 2010-11 season ticket holders on the Club Level concourse. The day is being held in conjunction with the final deadline to purchase or renew season tickets for the best possible value.
2010-11 season ticket holders will receive complimentary parking in the Times Forum North Lot on a first-come-first-served basis. The Lightning Girls, ThunderBug and new Lightning owner Jeff Vinik will be on hand to greet fans entering the Times Forum at Gate C and the Suite Entrance on the East side of the building. 2010-11 season ticket holders will also receive a 50 percent discount on merchandise at the Lightning Locker.
Once inside the building there will be a multitude of activities. The Fanland games will be in the north end zone of the arena for kids, along with face painters, balloon artists, airbrush tattoo artists, caricature artists and a kids crafts station. There will also be $2 hot dogs, pretzels, pizza, french fries, chicken tenders, popcorn, soda, water and beer. Those in attendance will also have the opportunity to enter to win a team-signed stick, tickets to the April 10 game versus the Florida Panthers, four tickets to Bon Jovi on April 17, four Tampa Bay Storm season tickets and a team-signed jersey. The Lightning Foundation will also be on hand at Section 120 to host a "Lightning Foundation Frenzy". It will feature a closeout sale on autographed memorabilia from previous players, merchandise and a few current player items will be available on auction.
From 11-11:45 a.m. all fans will be welcomed to an open chalk talk in the arena bowl with 2004 Lightning Stanley Cup Captain Dave Andreychuk as well as television color commentator Bobby "the Chief" Taylor and play-by-play announcer Rick Peckham. At noon the Bolts will take to the ice for practice. The session will be open to the public.
At 1 p.m., or when practice ends, fans will be allowed onto the ice to try their hand at taking shots on net or take pictures on the Lightning bench as well as in the penalty boxes. Also during that time, there will be meet and greet opportunities on the Plaza Level with Andreychuk, Taylor, Peckham and radio play-by-play announcer Dave Mishkin as well as former Lightning players Chris Dingman and Brian Bradley.
Beginning at 1 p.m. on the Club Level, all 2010-11 season ticket holders will have the opportunity to get autographs from all their favorite Lightning players. The team will be broken into pairs and randomly placed throughout the concourse. 2010-11 season ticket holders will also have access to complimentary food and beverages in the Channelside Club or stop by the "show your pride station" where they can create their own Lightning message. Fans can also sign up for the Lightning credit card and receive two free Tampa Bay Storm season tickets courtesy of Grow Financial.
Finally, from 2-2:30 p.m. the Lightning will host a season ticket holder orientation in Icons Restaurant. There will also be computers where season ticket holders can receive a tutorial of how to use their online "My Lightning Account Manager". There will also be a briefing by Lightning and St. Pete Times Forum staff covering season ticket benefits and more.
On March 11 the team launched an aggressive season ticket sales campaign for the 2010-11 regular season. Current and new season ticket holders are able to realize outstanding value if they lock-in their commitments by the end of the day tomorrow.
All fans purchasing 2010-11 season tickets prior to April 3 will receive an average savings of 4.9% from the 2009-10 season. Current season ticket holders who renew by April 3 receive an even greater average savings for their continuing loyalty.
Specific highlights of the 2010-11 Season Ticket Program feature a reduction of 9% percent for plaza level sideline tickets (from an average of $81 per game to $74 per game) and 11% and 17% reductions in Channelside Club tickets, depending on seating location within the club. Also, "Times Toppers" seats (sponsored by the St. Petersburg Times in select sections of the Terrace Level) will remain flat at $6 per game ($239 for the season), which will continue to make affordable season tickets available to Lightning fans.
For more information, or to view the 2010-11 interactive early season ticket membership renewal brochure, visit www.tampabaylightning.com or call 813.301.6600.