Cultural two-fers

November 5, 2008
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One of the more convenient excuses given for not going to cultural events is the cost.

Well, with the 25th anniversary Zoobook now in release, that excuse has once again been mitigated.

Yes, I know that there are those of you who have trouble when it comes to using a coupon for anything. If you are going out on a restaurant date, I understand how pulling out a tattered 2-for-1 can make you seem cheap.

But when it comes to the arts, it seems foolish not to take advantage of the offers being presented by some of Indy's top producers and presenters. No matter what your entertainment budget, the Zoobook offerings can help expand your choices or upgrade your frequency.

And if you get your tickets in advance, your date will never know that you doubled down. (Plus, just by buying the book, you are helping the Indianapolis Zoo.)

Do I sound like a saleperson? I'm not. But I am constantly looking for ways to make it easier for people to take advantage of what's being offered here in town. And in challenging economic times, the Zoobook can be a big help. 

This year's book, which doesn't expire until Dec. of 2009, includes buy one/get one free tickets to, among others, the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, Dance Kaleidoscope, Indianapolis Opera, American Cabaret Theatre, the Eiteljorg Museum, Pike Performing Arts Center, Actors Theatre of Indiana, Conner Prairie, Theatre on the Square, and Indianapolis Civic Theatre. And that's not even touching the food.

I haven't yet gotten a look at the other big annual coupon book, Entertainment 09 (usually sold as a fundraiser for local charities), but if I get my hands on one I'll report what cultural offerings it contains. Stay tuned.

So how comfortable are you using coupons for the arts? Has a discount ever made the difference for you between going and not going to a production? Or, when choosing between events to attend, have you picked one over another because you had a coupon? Finally, arts professionals, do you look differently at patrons who pull out the familiar rectangular Zoobook pages when buying tickets?

Your thoughts? 
  • We go to IRT productions each year only because it offers a great multi-ticket package deal. If I was paying full price for each ticket, we might -- MIGHT -- see one show a year there.

    So no, I'm not too proud to take advantage of discounts, especially with a family of four. Plus, children may not enjoy a certain cultural event that I want them to try, and I'm much more likely to take the chance if I'm doing so on a discounted admission.
  • When I first moved to Boston (back in the late 90's) our bank printed free coupons to several museums/sites on the back of our ATM receipts. We went to each one (I think there were 12). Took us a few months. We never would have gone to several of the places if it hadn't been free. A few of the places we not memorable, but we gladly paid and went back to a few or took visiting relatives.
  • I think one of the more convenient excuses for not going to cultural events downtown is the hassle and expense of parking. I bet some people would go to the IRT, the ISO, and so on if they received a coupon for free valet parking with each paid admission.

    If I won the lottery, I would treat myself to valet parking every time.

    Well, no, actually, I would probably just hire a driver to take me to all of my arts events. Wouldn't that be the life!

    But in the meantime, there is no shame in using discount coupons of any kind.

    Hope Baugh
  • T,
    Love the ATM receipt idea.
    Any banks out there willing to give it a shot?

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