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PQQLK9
02-07-2005, 07:30 AM
Area looks to gain from pool tourney

By J. Eric Eckard, Rocky Mount Telegram

Sunday, February 06, 2005

This week's professional women's pool tournament is expected to bring in thousands of dollars to the local economy, tourism officials said.

"We're expecting people from all over the United States to come to this tournament," said Martha Lamm, executive director of the Nash County Travel and Tourism Bureau. "We've already had people calling from Maine, asking for information."

The Carolina Women's Billiard Classic is the first stop on this year's Women's Professional Billiard Association tour, and it runs Thursday through Sunday at the Business and Industry Center on the campus of Nash Community College. Sixty-four WPBA professionals will compete over four days to win the title. ESPN will televise parts of the tournament, including the finals on Sunday, at a later date.

"Just like NASCAR, (professional pool players) have a following," Lamm said. "The hotels already have been getting reservations."

Lamm said several Rocky Mount hotels, such as the Hampton Inn, Holiday Inn, Comfort Inn and Days Inn, are expected to house players and fans during the tournament.

"And they've got to eat," Lamm added. "These ladies normally come with one or two others. So, you've got 64 ladies and one or two people with them, plus the fans."

Seating capacity for each session of the tournament is 750. So far, organizers have sold 1,076 tickets, including 350 for the finals on Sunday, said Tony Davis, PrimeQuest Association CEO. Rocky Mount-based PrimeQuest is a nonprofit organization that also makes The Spider, an aiming and training device used for pool.

Davis said advance ticket sales are at about 40 percent, and he wants to sell at least half of the tickets available Wednesday.

A pro-am tournament is scheduled for 7 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, with area notables and WPBA players participating in a fund-raiser for the Nash Community College Foundation Scholarship Program. Some of the amateurs participating include Southern Bank's Mike Bryant, N.C. Wesleyan President Dr. Ian Newbould and 16-year-old D.J. Robinson, who has one arm but is a skilled pool player.

"This is the first time we've ever done anything like this, so we don't know what to expect," Lamm said. "Potentially, there will be thousands and thousands of dollars in economic impact to the area."

For more information, visit www.carolinawbc.com. (http://www.carolinawbc.com.)

Rich R.
02-07-2005, 07:42 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote PQQLK9:</font><hr> Davis said advance ticket sales are at about 40 percent, and he wants to sell at least half of the tickets available Wednesday.<hr /></blockquote>
Ticket sales would have been better, if they had decent seats. From my personal contact with Mr. Davis, they have bleacher seating only, except for the TV rounds, when they have a limited number of chairs.

With better seating, I know of at least two more tickets they would have sold for the entire tournament. /ccboard/images/graemlins/tongue.gif
On AZB, some others mentioned that they would have gone, if there were better seating.

I hope they learn for next time. /ccboard/images/graemlins/confused.gif

JohnnyP
02-07-2005, 01:48 PM
Shirley and I had the same complaint when we went to see the ladies play in San Diego last year.

We went on Sunday, and I think it was $20 each. The bleachers were packed, so we sat near the bar and watched it on closed circuit TV.

Space in the bleachers opened up after the first event, but was so uncomfortable that we left before the final match.