We purchased 2 of the $65.00 tickets and our relatives purchased 3 of the same. We have been to many concerts over the last 18 years (several at casinos) and have always been happy. This time, we are angry and disgusted about last night's situation September 12, 2008.
Like so many others, we sat in traffic less than 2 miles from the casino for 2 hours, from shortly after 7 until just after 9pm. We called the casino to ask what the problem was and were told that they were honoring the tickets from a May concert that had been cancelled. We asked about the traffic proble, but wer told they didnt know anything about it but would send the manager out to see. When we finally arrived, we were directed to the back parking lot. We realized soon after we arrived at the gates of the concert, that it was ending, but after sitting in traffic that long, we were desperate to use a bathroom. Many were already gathering and tried to speak with Casino authorities about the situation, but were not given the opportunity.
We also asked about our unused tickets and the woman at the gate told us, "This is an outdoor venue and there is no way you can get your money refunded." Many in the crowd were shouting obscenities and some even tried to form groups to go inside the casino to "raise h*ll". Not wishing to be part of that, we left quickly and headed back to our car.
For one hour and 15 minutes we were trapped in the casino parking lot. At that point, we just wanted to go home and we could not even move. We contacted the casino again and spoke with numerous people. They all said the same thing, "We are sorry, but there is absolutely nothing we can do. There is one way in and one way out. You are stuck." When we asked them why they weren't prepared for an event of this magnitude, we were told that there were more people than expected because they were honoring all the tickets from the concert that had been cancelled earlier this year.
We then spoke with security because where we were, people were angry as exhibited by honking, shouting, hurling obscenities and cutting one another off when we did finally move. We told them we felt it was dangerous and that at the very least, they should send some security to the back of the parking lot. The woman we spoke to said they would get us out when they got us out and hung up on us. There was never any security in the parking lot, only flashlight wavers as we got closer to the front of the lot. I'm sure the rude security guard was frustrated because she said she had been fielding these kind of calls all night.
We even contacted the Sheriff. Dispatch told us they had received several calls and had sent their deputies out, but even they could do nothing because there was literally only one way out. We asked if Riverside County felt this was safe. She was careful with her comments but said there was nothing they could do at this time.
Now, we were definitely angry about missing the concert, but our main issue here is the danger we feel we were put in by this traffic situation. We have been to many venues like this and one of the worst combinations out there is having cowboys who are intoxicated, angry and feel trapped. As far as we know there were no brawls and we did make it out safely, but the potential there for disaster is huge.
We want to know what Soboba Casino is going to do about this. We purchased tickets assuming Soboba Casino was an appropriate venue. We had not been there prior to last night and will not return unless we walk in and out.