• Report: #389930

Complaint Review: Austin Media Group

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  • Submitted: Mon, November 10, 2008
  • Updated: Mon, November 10, 2008

  • Reported By:Nowhere Texas
Austin Media Group
dr30.com Austin, Texas U.S.A.

Austin Media Group Held 30-Year Cast of "Dallas" Reunion and Attendees were Ripped-Off Dallas Texas

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Fans call 'Dallas' reunion a rip-off

02:59 PM CST on Monday, November 10, 2008

WFAA-TV

Reunion Rip-Off?

November 10th, 2008
DALLAS,Texas The cast of the hit show "Dallas" knows all about knockdown, drag-out fights and unassuming scandal.

But none of them were ready to face the sparks that flew at their 30-year reunion on Saturday night.

Thousands gathered at Southfork Ranch in Parker, Texas ready to celebrate; most left the event with complaints.

Organizers had promised fireworks for the "Dallas" reunion, and on that count, it delivered.

Insiders described the night as "chaotic," filled with behind-the-scenes fights, screaming matches, and a lot of angry fans.

Some fans allegedly paid up to $1,000 each for a ticket to the event.

"It was a huge letdown, totally not worth it," said Elizabeth Knight, who paid $400 for a ticket. "I do feel I got totally ripped off. I don't understand where that money went."

The ticket was supposed to buy among other things access to the show's cast. Knight says those perks never materialized. "Everyone was really unhappy about it," she said.

Southfork said hundreds more fans showed up than expected, overwhelming organizers.

Promised cocktail gatherings with the stars didn't happen, assigned seats were yanked, and a lot of people left disappointed.

Joy Garcia said there was little direction as she arrived. "He just grabbed these two, scratched our names off and said, 'go on in.'"

Garcia added she was glad she bought the cheap seats. "We were extremely happy we were in the $100 section, because we got the same access as everyone else did."

That angered many VIPs.

"When it came down to managing the time schedule, that's where it fell down," said Parker Mayor Joe Cordina. "I just think there's better ways to do things."

While Southfork Ranch hosted the event, its directors were clear to point out they were not running the show.

"I feel we were misled, as was the public that bought tickets," said Southfork retail manager Sherry Haughwout.

The promoter of the "Dallas" reunion, Jason Hardison of Austin ,Texas Media Group, maintained that the event was a success, adding that the stars did mingle with some guests.

Hardison blamed any hiccups on the ranch, saying he had "never seen a venue like Southfork that was so impossible and difficult to work with."

Southfork denies that allegation.

Hardison said he is very disappointed about what happened, and that he understands why so many fans are upset.

While the event was planned for 2,000 people, he estimates that another 2,000 were able to sneak in.

Hardison said he was trying to figure out how to make it right for the fans, but wouldn't offer any details.

The promoter was supposed to have been a close friend of Larry Hagman.

When news media tried to contact him in his hotel room, he would not come out of his suite to make a statement.

Confusion at 'Dallas' reunion rankles fans
By LINDA STEWART BALL
Published: Monday, Nov. 10, 2008

DALLAS,Texas -- Who saw J.R.?

A weekend event organized to celebrate the 30th anniversary of "Dallas" has created a drama worthy of the Ewing family itself after angry fans complained they didn't get the access to cast members they'd ponied up for - while others got close to the stars without paying for the privilege.

It happened in part because hundreds more people than expected showed up for Saturday night's barbecue and cast reunion at the famed Southfork Ranch. The event's organizers are blaming Southfork for allowing gatecrashers; a ranch official places the blame on the organizers.

"It was a huge letdown - totally not worth it. I do feel like I got really ripped off," Elizabeth Knight, who paid $400 in anticipation of getting access to the cast, told Dallas-Fort Worth television station WFAA.

Fans had paid anywhere from $100 to $1,000 for tickets, with those who paid higher prices to gain greater access to Larry Hagman, Linda Gray, Patrick Duffy and others.

Jason Hardison, the event's executive producer, said instead of the 2,000 people expected, 4,000 showed up to celebrate one of the most popular prime-time soap operas in TV history. Viewed panoramically in the show's introduction, the ranch is in the Dallas suburb of Parker, about 25 miles north of downtown Dallas.

"I'm brokenhearted about what happened and I feel like the fans were cheated out of what was promised to them," he said. "I felt like the beautiful party that was promised and planned was completely stolen by just a blatant lack of competence on the part of the property owners."

But an official with the management company that runs Southfork said it only provided off-duty police officers in the area where alcohol was served - anything beyond that was the responsibility of organizers.

Hardison was in charge of the event and would have been in charge of the rest of the security, including the gates, said Darla Cook, vice president of public relations of Arizona-based Forever Resorts.

Cook disputed Hardison's crowd estimate as well, saying there were only between 1,500 to 2,000 people in attendance. She said it likely felt like more because Hardison's staff was not controlling what areas of the event fans were able to access.

"I'm working on how they (the fans) can be reimbursed," Hardison said. "I'm working on how I can make this up to the fans. They deserve that. They did not deserve this disappointment."

But Joy Garcia said it worked out well for her.

"We were extremely happy that we were in the $100 section because we got the same access that everyone else did," she said.

HERE'S WHAT OTHER ATTENDEES HAD TO SAY ABOUT THE OVERPRICED FIASCO:

This gathering was the BIGGEST RIPOFF of my hard earned $500 I've ever seen......Nothing was organized, it all ran late, nothing that was listed on this web-site for the $500 AND $1,000 ticket holders came about, no cocktail party, no Dallas cast walking around the VIP section after the stage Q&A, there were not enough tables in the VIP section to accommodate all the ticket holders, people were left standing because there were not enough tables to sit at, there was no monitoring of wristbands or seating sections, people who paid $100 & $250 tickets were sitting in the VIP section and no one on the premises associated with Southfork Ranch could answer any of the complaints, they kept saying "we have not control over what's going on here....People were walking out and saying out loud, "we got ripped off, and we got screwed" which is the truth.......you need to get with The Austin Media Group or whoever planned this event and refund our money......this will not stop with me, a lot of us exchanged information and this is not the last you will hear about this, DALLAS has LOST a lot of fans over this....I'll NEVER watch it again.....it was even on the local Dallas news Sunday night about what a rip-off it was because so many people complained!!!! I'm just lucky I didn't fly in from out of town, spend several thousand on a few tickets plus air fare, hotel and car rental as a lot of attendees did just for this event!!!!! I WANT A REFUND!!!!!

just recieved word that there was news crews at Southfork earlier this eve.
seems austin media group is closed up and moved on with no way to reach either jason or brad. I had been given brad's number by him, and by the way he was very rude, and I called his number and its still active but there are no answers. I have this on very good authority.. just recieved word about an hour ago and its reliable... trust me. will post more as I find out.
so sorry to everyone... all of us and sorry for the cast as well...
this is just unbelievable. going to be on the local texas news at ten there time i believe....
__________________
"You're lookin' mighty pleased with yourself tonight JR, you manage to evict some widdows today?"

"JR has a way of making a crooked scheme seem noble."

they were even selling 100 seats till 5pm on saturday.. one woman almost got cheated out of 10 as "tax" because she was a bit "slow".. nice woman but she was being taken advantage of because she wasn't "normal". Her mother made a scene and got the ten dollars back.
there were people in the house with 100 wrist bands who shouldnt have even made it to the section A.
Plus.. the "staff" were seniors and students who were recruited as volunteers and not paid anything... not a one of them. they got them from a senior organization. at one point.. there were none to be found really thats why the section A gate was unmanned. Sheree Wilsons parents sat at my table because, as family, there were no provisions made for them. I insisted they sit there as if we moved there would have been nowhere to sit at all then and I had been sitting there for a very long time to begin with. They eventually went to the tables on the stage. the cast was even calling out to their friends and family over the microphones as they hadnt seen them in at least an hour or more and didnt know where they were.

I'm sorry to blame the cast for this misfortune, It was not in their control, but I will always have a "SOUR" taste in my mouth concerning the show, and it will never ever be the same watching it again after this fiasco! Our 10:00 local news here in Dallas WFAA channel 8 had a story about the hundreds of complaints called in to the studio, that they had to get a scoop on it. They reported that the AUSTIN MEDIA GROUP oversold the tickets by close to a thousand! So, they had seating for about a thousand, but sold 2000 tickets! They reported the the security, and all volunteers, and Southfork Ranch staff were completely overwhelmed by the mass of people that ended up there, that they just told everyone to sit wherever they could regardless of how much they paid for their ticket.

There were fights, and rude 1,000 ticket holders up near the front of the stage who were mad and making tacky remarks to anyone who was trying to come get at least a glimpse of the cast onstage. The commemorative "gift bags" contained.....a clear pouch of various hand creams, a half quart of peach aloe vera drink, a thick book about "Forever Living Products International".
which by the way is a company headed by the current owner of Southfork Ranch, Rex Maughan! There were no Dallas 30th memorabilia in the bag except a plastic shot glass that had DR30 printed on it, no Dallas logos on it, nothing, now isnt that just CRAPPY or WHAT!

I feel so much for all the attendees that flew in just for this event from all over the USA and around the world who bought top dollar tickets, and airfare, hotel, and car rental which added into the thousands for them and they basically got nothing in return!

These promoters need to speak out, before they get the calls coming in from the Better Business Bureau!!! THIS IS NOT OVER BY A LONG SHOT!!!
Band together attendees and lets get back our MONEY!!!!!

Heading to Dallas from Scotland uk and after a long drive, flights, tickets, hotel, all which cost a lot of money and anticipation, we feel really upset and let down that the promoters did not have this event under control.

From queing up in the midday sun for tickets that weren't organised, waiting to get a photo opportunity then being told nope no more photo's, no table numbers and a struggle to find a table, never mind a seat - after paying 2 x $500!! 1 guy serving at each bar took forever to serve, no cast mingles, crew & hangers-on spoiling any possible photo opportunity, couldnt get to BBQ without losing table & seats, no autographs, why did we spend thousands for this??? we are very hurt disappointed and upset!! and we are the fans who made the effort? did anyone really care about us? - no they damn well didn't! - sorry guys but you're gonna have to do a lot to convince us this was worth it!

Confusion at 'Dallas' reunion rankles fans
The cast of Dallas holds court at the Southfork Ranch during the show's 30th anniversary celebration Saturday.

DALLAS,Texas Who saw J.R.?

A weekend event organized to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Dallas has created a drama worthy of the Ewing family itself after angry fans complained they didn't get the access to cast members they'd ponied up for while others got close to the stars without paying for the privilege.

It happened in part because hundreds more people than expected showed up for Saturday night's barbecue and cast reunion at the famed Southfork Ranch. The event's organizers are blaming Southfork for allowing gatecrashers; a ranch official places the blame on the organizers.

"It was a huge letdown totally not worth it. I do feel like I got really ripped off," Elizabeth Knight, who paid $400 in anticipation of getting access to the cast, told Dallas-Fort Worth television station WFAA.

Fans had paid anywhere from $100 to $1,000 for tickets, with those who paid higher prices to gain greater access to Larry Hagman, Linda Gray, Patrick Duffy and others.

Jason Hardison, the event's executive producer, said instead of the 2,000 people expected, 4,000 showed up to celebrate one of the most popular prime-time soap operas in TV history. Viewed panoramically in the show's introduction, the ranch is in the Dallas suburb of Parker, about 25 miles north of downtown Dallas.

"I'm brokenhearted about what happened and I feel like the fans were cheated out of what was promised to them," he said. "I felt like the beautiful party that was promised and planned was completely stolen by just a blatant lack of competence on the part of the property owners."

But an official with the management company that runs Southfork said it only provided off-duty police officers in the area where alcohol was served anything beyond that was the responsibility of organizers.

Hardison was in charge of the event and would have been in charge of the rest of the security, including the gates, said Darla Cook, vice president of public relations of Arizona-based Forever Resorts.

Cook disputed Hardison's crowd estimate as well, saying there were only between 1,500 to 2,000 people in attendance. She said it likely felt like more because Hardison's staff was not controlling what areas of the event fans were able to access.

"I'm working on how they (the fans) can be reimbursed," Hardison said. "I'm working on how I can make this up to the fans. They deserve that. They did not deserve this disappointment."

A weekend event organized to celebrate the 30th anniversary of "Dallas" has created a drama worthy of the Ewing family itself after angry fans complained they didn't get the access to cast members they'd ponied up for - while others got close to the stars without paying for the privilege.

It happened in part because hundreds more people than expected showed up for Saturday night's barbecue and cast reunion at the famed Southfork Ranch. The event's organizers are blaming Southfork for allowing gatecrashers; a ranch official places the blame on the organizers.

"It was a huge letdown - totally not worth it. I do feel like I got really ripped off," Elizabeth Knight, who paid $400 in anticipation of getting access to the cast, told Dallas-Fort Worth television station WFAA.

Fans had paid anywhere from $100 to $1,000 for tickets, with those who paid higher prices to gain greater access to Larry Hagman, Linda Gray, Patrick Duffy and others.

Jason Hardison, the event's executive producer, said instead of the 2,000 people expected, 4,000 showed up to celebrate one of the most popular prime-time soap operas in TV history. Viewed panoramically in the show's introduction, the ranch is in the Dallas suburb of Parker, about 25 miles north of downtown Dallas.

"I'm brokenhearted about what happened and I feel like the fans were cheated out of what was promised to them," he said. "I felt like the beautiful party that was promised and planned was completely stolen by just a blatant lack of competence on the part of the property owners."

But an official with the management company that runs Southfork said it only provided off-duty police officers in the area where alcohol was served - anything beyond that was the responsibility of organizers.

Hardison was in charge of the event and would have been in charge of the rest of the security, including the gates, said Darla Cook, vice president of public relations of Arizona-based Forever Resorts.

Cook disputed Hardison's crowd estimate as well, saying there were only between 1,500 to 2,000 people in attendance. She said it likely felt like more because Hardison's staff was not controlling what areas of the event fans were able to access.

"I'm working on how they (the fans) can be reimbursed," Hardison said. "I'm working on how I can make this up to the fans. They deserve that. They did not deserve this disappointment."

And here is a Report from Channel 33 --DID THEY ATTEND THE SAME EVENT? OR MAYBE IT WAS WRITTEN WITHOUT THE REPORTER EVEN ATTENDING THE EVENT?

"Dallas" reunion
November 8, 2008

Lights. Camera. Action. Berlin Sheets has been waiting for this star-studded day for months. He says, "I haven't been this excited since I was about 12 (when) I got to see Dolly Parton for the first time." But today it was all about JR, Sue Ellen, Bobby, etc. The cast of the tv soap opera Dallas, which started in 1978, gathered at Southfork, for a 30-year cast reunion.

Mike Pingel says, "Hat, $20. This, priceless." Well, maybe. But Mike Pingel and dozens of others shelled out a thousand dollars a pop for a personal photo op. The crowd included Louisiana's Taylor Romero, who scrounged for the money from every friend and family member she could find. Romero says, "I have been a fan of Dallas since I was a little girl with my grandmother, and she died a year ago. So this is really special." So, too, for Ruy Cardoso, who hopped a 15 hour flight from Brazil. "It's a dream come true. It's wonderful."

That's what the entire crowd thought when the entire cast, minus Victoria Principal walked the red carpet on their way into the famed homestead of the Ewing clan. Cast member, Linda "Sue Ellen Ewing" Gray said today was a blast. Gray says, "The good thing for me is that we've known each other and loved each other for 30 years." Patrick "Bobby Ewing" Duffy says, ''It's terrific. It's a little surreal. I'm just glad there are at least this many people that watched the show, or at least their mothers did."

And that as they say in Hollywood and in Dallas is a happy ending and a wrap.

Anonymous
Nowhere, Texas
U.S.A.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 11/10/2008 08:31 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Austin-Media-Group/Austin-Texas-78703-3247/Austin-Media-Group-Held-30-Year-Cast-of-Dallas-Reunion-and-Attendees-were-Ripped-Off-Dal-389930. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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