Darcia Harcott stood overlooking the South Okanagan Events Centre when it suddenly hit her — she won tickets to every ticketed event at the venue for the next year.
“Thank you so much, thank you. It is such an incredible prize and I am so excited,” said Harcott, wiping away a few tears of joy. “I am trying not to be totally overwhelmed by it right now, but the grandness of it is so crazy. It is so cool.”
As the lucky winner of the #Key2SOEC contest held by the SOEC in partnership with the Penticton Western News, SunFM and EZRock, Harcott said she received the call on Friday that she was the winner.
“Randy (Farmer) from SunFM called and shocked me by saying I had won the Key to the SOEC contest. I was so baffled,” said Harcott. “I’m still not sure if it has fully hit me yet.”
The promotion originally began at a Spectra-managed sister-building and has become an exciting way for the venue management company to thank patrons for their unwavering support at hockey games, concerts and events, of which Harcott was a regular. The public was invited to enter for a chance to win from July 14 to Aug 10, either
online or through the SOEC Facebook page.
“We try to go to everything. We like to support the community and get to as many things as we can. My husband and I are huge music lovers, we have even been bringing our kids to as much as we can too,” said Harcott.
Passing along the torch to her kids, just as her mom did, will now be a little easier with the free tickets.
“I was raised on music. My mom use to wake us up Saturday mornings, even as a teenager, cranking The Beatles tunes, Rolling Stones or whoever. The whole house would be shaking,” said Harcott. “Winning this is so great because now I can bring my kids to more things and share that experience with them.”
Having gone to many shows over the years at the SOEC, Harcott is well versed on the arena.
“The building is great and because it is a small venue there isn’t a bad seat in the house. We usually try and get on the floor, but for Def Leppard we were in the bowl and I loved it. You got to see it all. You saw the show from a whole different perspective,” she said.
Harcott said she would be returning the favour to her mom by taking her to a few shows and she knows her husband will be excited about Slayer on Oct. 19 and the Five Finger Deathpunch tickets when they come to Penticton on Sept. 10 with Papa Roach.
Harcott is excited for it all and the SOEC is where she got her first taste of country music.
“Eric Church was my favourite concert by far, he was incredible. I wasn’t a huge fan of his before, but I am now. He was my gateway to country music. I think we have seen almost every country music artist that has come through Penticton since then. The show he put on floored me,” she said.
The toughest part will be deciding who gets to sit next to her at every event once word starts to spread she won the contest.
“I feel like my friends are going to be really, really nice to me and try to get themselves a ticket to something,” joked Harcott.
The estimated dollar value for the winner is approximately $3,500, which may fluctuate based on ticket availability, seat location and the booking of additional events. The winner gets access to every ticketed event at the SOEC from Aug. 31, 2016 to Aug. 30, 2017. The first show the winner will get to see for free is Rob Thomas on Aug. 31.
“#Key2SOEC contest has, without a doubt, been the biggest and most successful promotion we have launched in the history of the SOEC,” said Carla Seddon, director of marketing, Spectra Venue Management. “It’s been a lot of fun and we want to thank everyone in the Valley for their participation. We had over 5,000 qualified entries and we’re already looking forward to launching this contest again next year.”