Ok, so I meant to write a blog about our Skate Park Donation yesterday – but I got caught
up in the excitement of the ticket sales release. I’m going to postpone Part 2 of “What Matters to You” until Monday.
Let’s talk about yesterday. 🙂
Those of you who’ve been part of our community for a few years know what usually happens on the ticket release date. There’s all this build up, all this anticipation, the tickets are released at Noon, you start your orders and then – our server crashes from the high volume of traffic and everyone sits there; upset, nervous, annoyed – obsessively refreshing their browsers and hoping it’s just a fluke and that the order page will show up again just as randomly as it disappeared.
And I panic, call our tech guys, and beg them to fix it for us.
But as you know, we postponed ticket sales a by week to migrate our sever, so that we could ensure our website could handle the traffic. And those of you who ordered tickets yesterday know it worked like a charm.
That’s not to say I didn’t have my panicked moment around Noon (right on schedule) yesterday.
I’d posted on our FB page that tickets would go on sale in 7 hours. Then I went back to answering some emails. When I checked the FB page just after Noon, there were people posting that they’d already bought their tickets. I was shocked. I quickly opened a new browser, and went to the Shambhala home page to find – that yes, tickets were available for purchase. And then I panicked. And called our Tech Guy. Our conversation went something like;
“Um, did we decide to change the sale time back to Noon, and I just didn’t get the memo?”
“Oh. ‘Cause um…the ticket store is live and people are buying them. And I don’t know what to do. We promised to sell them at 6pm.” I was worried about people being upset that tickets didn’t go on sale when advertised.
And then, bless his cotton socks, he looked into it right away and fixed it. The issue turned out to be that when we migrated the server there was a timezone difference, so even though he’d set it to go live automatically at 6pm PST, it got triggered at Noon PST.
And luckily, only 28 tickets had gone through. So we ended up selling 28 more extra-early birds than we’d intended (for a total of 1,028 in the first tier). Congrats to the “Lucky 28” who got their Shambhala tickets a few hours ahead of everyone else by mere chance!
And then the work day ended. I picked up a bottle of wine, and went home to watch ‘the show’. I figured tickets would sell out in about 17 minutes. That was my guess.
6:00 pm rolled around, and I hit the refresh button on the Shambhala home page. In my first refresh that revealed the ticket checkout, 50 orders had already started to process (so my screen showed 950 available). 2nd refresh, which I did right after the first one had finished loading, showed 124 tickets available. What? I thought that had to be a mistake. 3rd refresh – the ticket order box completely disappeared. “Ok,” I’m thinking to myself, “The ticket app must’ve crashed with all the traffic.” But out of curiosity, I refreshed again. And the ticket order box reappeared, with 3485 tickets available at early bird price.
I looked at the clock. 6:01 pm.
Did that…really just happen? Did we just sell all our extra-early birds in…one minute?
I was shocked. The volume of ticket sales yesterday was completely unprecedented. It shattered any previous record for # of ticket sales in the shortest period of time by about 6-7 hours. And none of us could have predicted that the first tier would sell out THAT quickly. Unbelievable.
It ended up being close to 2000 ticket sales yesterday. That’s 20% of our population in one day.
And all I can think is how grateful I am that this event has such an awesome crowd, who love it so much that 1000 tickets can sell in one minute. You guys are the core of this event. The diehards, who really make it what it is and create the overall atmosphere Shambhalove. Your enthusiasm is the key to what makes this so special. We love you guys, too. And we can’t wait to bring you the best Shambhala yet.
So, citizens of Shambhala, today we collectively take our first steps on the road to Shambhala 2011. We’ll see you all when you come home in 283 days.