Jim Barker more Canadian than most Canadians !

That wasn't my point. I'm well-aware that Toronto is a very ethnically diverse city: I live in Toronto. I'd just like us to have some statistical evidence that immigrants don't know the game and don't like CFL football before we assume that they're responsible for the Argos' inability to draw fans.

lol dis, there are no statistics for such things, who would keep them???

This just boils down to demographics and probability.

Stop what ? You are going to try and say my statement is racist ? Is that it ? LOL
Not so but the demographics of Toronto are what they are. Where in Montreal the Haitian community has taken to the game, I don't know that you could say the same about the ethnic community in Toronto.

I live in Vancouver. We have a very large Chinese community here. Crowds at Tempire and BC Pace are disproportionately un-Chinese. This does not stop football fans from coming to the games.

If you like football and/or you like your team, why would an immigrant or ethnic minority moving next door to you cause you to lose interest in the sport?

Agreed. Paying Maple Leaf prices for a ticket where over half of the stadium is ridiculous to say the very least. In that scenario, all you're doing is taxing your loyal diehards to the max, while making it very un-appealing for casual or non-fans to come out to the stadium. A team like the Eskimos have resisted the urge to jack up ticket prices; rather have focused on getting butts into the seats at the stadium; and yet they still make more money than most teams in terms of ticket revenues, largely due to those larger numbers.

...what i meant to say is when over half of the stadium is empty :oops:

You'd pay about $120 for those same seats in Winnipeg, considering it's TO, that price doesn't seem out of whack to me.

Toronto's woes are because of many things. Not just one or two.

-The city's make-up is diverse (hard to grow when your growing communities have no interest in the game)
-The stadium is too large (hard to generate demand)
-The pricing is structured for a 28,000 seat stadium in a 52,000 seat stadium (they have to get a new venue or at least give Rogers Centre the appearance of a more intimate venue. Tarping off the endzones with Argo banners and selling cheap tickets in the 500 level sidelines during the C&S years was great but when they went to closing off the 500 level completely without completely obscuring it, the atmosphere went flat)
-The stadium is closed in (not open to the surrounding neighbourhoods to say I'M HERE! like BMO Field)
-There are many competing sports teams (Leafs, Jays, Raptors, Rock, TFC)
-There are many more competing arts and entertainment options (too many to even begin listing)
-An 8 team league is not very compelling to a sports audience used to seeing their teams compete in the 30+ club American sports leagues.
-The CFL's lack of marketing and TV blackouts from the 70s, 80s and 90s killed the century-old historical and cultural link of the city to the club. The Blue Jays, then the Raptors and TFC have moved in to claim chunks of that void. The Argos never did what it took to take back that spot in the hearts and minds of Toronto sports fans.

The Argos need to find themselves a place in the mindset of Toronto's community circa 2011 onward. I have no idea how they'll do that but their biggest hinderence right now would be the venue if you ask me.

We've all been over this a million times over the years.

I just want to say I don't like the Rogers Centre for any sport especially football. I'm a huge CFL fan here but won't go to the stadium to even watch the Cats play, as a rule. I'll be there for the Grey Cup though.

The venue as joedav says. Toronto needs a new 25000 football stadium. But it is very complex why the Argos don't draw, lots of things as has been said many times.

I'm just very happy I live in a CFL area with a great intimate CFL stadium. Beats the crap.out of the RC and The Ralph hands down and will be even better with the reno. I love Ivor Wynne Stadium. Thank god my team doesn't play in the RC for our home games. :thup: :thup:

This seems like a very well thought out post, and I agree with all of it. I particularly agree that there is likely a venue problem. My suggestion is to get a more intimate 35000 seat football-only stadium, with huge parking lots that invite fans to tail-gate and party before the game. A festival atmosphere would go a long way to getting people to come out.

I don't expect these things to happen, particularly tail-gating, because we're talking about Ontario The Good here, but if they want to create a spectacle that will draw legions of loyal fans game after game, then do something that will appeal to those fans: Give them what works with American-style games, and tail-gating is hugely popular (for good reason — it's major FUN).

the difference is, winnipeg has a small stadium and obviously enough demand to warrent such prices.
toronto has 45,000-50,000 seats to fill and clearly cannot justify those ticket prices.

much like a grey cup game's tickets are cheaper when played in a large stadium without the temp seating, argos tickets should be the cheapest in the league..espesially when there is less demand in T.O. then anywhere else in the league.

The Argos are.competing with the Blue Jays, same venue, same time of year and therefore people are looking at ticket prices and Jays games are fairly cheap I think and have big American cities coming to town which draws. Tough for the Argos. Toronto is more of a baseball city now at the time.when the Argos play. If I lived in TO though it would be the Argos for me as I love.CFL over baseball, but that's just me and maybe some others.

Yes very true.
But if I had to put my finger on the biggest reason, it would be the "World Class City" mentality aka the wannabe factor.

20,000 @ $60

40,000 @ $30

makes no difference at the gate, unless the Argos are getting concessions & parking on top of it, but with Rogers I doubt it?

the size of the venue is only relevant if there is more $$$ to be made off of more butts.

When I moved from Montreal to Southern Ontario I was astonished to learn that football fans in Niagara are by in large NFL fans. The young people especially are Bills supporters- they go to Buffalo games, enjoy the day long party that goes with it and, have little interest in CFL- although they will watch the Grey Cup game. In the NHL however the favorite team is the Maple Leafs and, the fans favor the Blue Jays.

The fact that all eastern CFL games are televised is a huge factor in looking at attendance. Why go to Hamilton or Toronto and pay a hefty price of admission when, we all have the huge HD television sets with surround sound and, can enjoy the games at home? Another factor in the world of the young is watching the games in sports bars with their buddies. There are just huge options discouraging going downtown to Hamilton/ Toronto. The older fans, like myself, will attend some of the Hamilton games but, for the young the NFL is king.

In the west, home games are not televised (?) and, that has to be the huge reason for their better attendance. Without doubt Argos and the TiCats would draw better if the games were not televised?

I don’t think the blackout plays into as much as you want to think. Most of the blackouts are lifted league wide now with the upswing attendance. All blacking out games does is prevent you from marketing your product.

I personally believe the facility (Rogers Center) plays a huge role in why they aren’t overly popular. It’s not a great place to go watch a game. It’s not intimate, it’s not loud, and it was built for baseball.

Not to take anything from JB, but the title of this thread could even more have been applied to Ron Lancaster. :thup:

When I moved from Montreal to Southern Ontario I was astonished to learn that football fans in Niagara are by in large NFL fans. The young people especially are Bills supporters- they go to Buffalo games, enjoy the day long party that goes with it and, have little interest in CFL

Niagara Als, actually it doesn't surprise me at all, same with Chatham and Essex county area so close to Detroit, actually all of Canada in some respects. It's the "great big NFL" with all the names plastered in the media and American TV coverage, "the best and biggest" as it's touted by most of the media, the hype of the big packed American stadiums etc. it's easy for people to cling onto that especially when you live so close. I don't blame the majority that say to heck with the "little ol' CFL and to heck with Canadian heritage, culture" etc. You have to work at really getting into Canadianisms much of the time and it's too much work for average joe blow Canadian. And I'm sure Jim Barker understands that as well really. But those that do get into Canadianisms like Canadian football culture as an example certainly have my utmost respect, they are special in my books. :thup:

Just to touch on some of the points made here, and comment a little... All of the west games are broadcast on HD and we have big tvs out here as well. As i learned on this forum, and then implimented, if you have HD on bell, no games are blacked out. here in the west, we just dont have the choices you guys have. no basketball, our baseball is a small independant league. flames tickets are sold out and over priced. same with oilers. regina doesnt have NHL yet, and im not sure about there baseball situaiton. Even the concerts and such that come to Toronto... way bigger then out here. Also, the closest NFL team to alberta is seattle. not sure about sask, but i cant think of any real close there either. southern ontario has lots of options in a small drive. detriot and bills to name two. Im sure if Calgary/edmonton/regina had those same things working against them, they would be in the same boat. hopefully the things Barker said will get people talking anbd stir up some interest. it just seemed pre-baily in toronto the owners didnt push to get lots of people out. just depended on word of mouth and a good product. but i dont live there, so i cant say for sure.

i don't blame the skydome at all.
i'd much rather be watching a game in a stadium at capacity packed with 45,000 then in a small but capacity 25,000 seater.
capacity creates atmosphere. everyone hates skydome because you are out numbered by empty seats currently.
if it was packed every game, i don't think you'd hear many complaints.

someone in the argos marketing department is NOT doing their job.
a tv audience of, roughly, 750,000 a game.
about half of that is comming from argo fans
so about 375,000 argo fans are watching on tv, but NOT going to games.

i believe it's price.
you can watch for free at home, in HD....OR pay $80 plus $15+ parking PLUS concessions, fight traffic and sit among empty seats, don't get commentary.
i wouldn't pay $80 for that, but for $35 i would. and i don't think the place would be empty at that price.

the argos need to create an online survey and have tsn game-announcers ( both radio and tv ) ask argo viewers to go to the argos website and complete the survey. ask the argo viewers why they dont go to games. and show a seating chart and ask the fans what prices they feel the various sections are worth.