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    Reseating Memorial Stadium off to fast start
    Fans are getting geared up for Coach Ron Zook and the 2008 Fighting Illini

    Fans are getting geared up for Coach Ron Zook and the 2008 Fighting Illini

    March 7, 2008

    Champaign, Ill. - The next phase of the Renaissance project got underway Monday with the process of re-seating existing season ticket holders. This comes in conjunction with the construction updates to Memorial Stadium.

    Illinois ticket manager Jason Heggemeyer indicates that his staff is calling about 100 accounts per day beginning with Loyalty Circle members, who are allowed to purchase up to eight tickets each. He reports that on the first day nearly 700 tickets were sold. For the week, the team made 515 calls and assigned 3,248 tickets.

    "People are pretty fired about the ability to pick their own seats," Heggemeyer said. "The best level of service is to ask customers what they want. Some people like to sit as close to the 50, some closer to the field. Rather than picking those seats for them, we are giving fans a chance to be the decision makers. We even had one donor who was in China on business and had his phone transferred there to be able to pick his seats."

    Similar to purchasing airline tickets on-line, renewing customers can track which seats have been selected to prepare for their appointment time to select their own seats. Simply go to fightingillini.com/renaissance and click on "view/select your seats." Fans can also download the reseating brochure, which includes information on seating allocation and benefits for I-FUND members at each level.

    Heggemeyer notes that the total process has been ongoing for well over a year. The first process was to create a priority points system. Much research went into determining the system, which rewards donors for the consecutive years as a season ticket holder and being an I-FUND member within each giving level. Last fall, all season ticket holders were given a letter, which indicated their total points and were given an opportunity to increase to a higher level and better position themselves in the re-seating order. Appointment times were set up beginning March 3 with Loyalty Circle members and will continue until late April.

    Following the renewals, new customers will be allocated seats in the order in which their requests were received, so Heggemeyer encourages those interested in purchasing season tickets to not delay in sending in their orders. He also reminds fans that this process is only for sidleline seats. Horseshoe season tickets jumped from 150 in 2006 to 11,200 in 2007. Customers in those seats can simply renew their seats from last year for just $77.

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