LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Never underestimate the power of the Big Blue Nation. Last year’s all-time record has been shattered with an estimated 755 tents set up as of Thursday at 1:00 p.m. ET.
The 2012 campout held the record previously with 595 tents. With the record number of tents on site, UK Athletics staff will make any new campers aware of the likelihood that they will not receive control cards for free tickets to the annual event.
“Based upon our latest estimated numbers, any tent or camper not already in line for Big Blue Madness tickets is not likely to receive control cards on Friday at 2 p.m. ET,” Deputy Athletics Director DeWayne Peevy said. “We will still maintain a limited number of tickets online for those who do not receive control cards on Friday or were not able to camp out.”
A fixed number of camper tickets are allotted each year based on availability after internal needs are established. Inventory already accounted for includes tickets for students, recruits, staff, sponsors, and both our men’s and women’s basketball programs. Unlike a normal basketball game at Rupp Arena, which seats 23,000 plus, capacity is decreased for the annual free event and is determined by the varying setup each year.
“Our goal is to protect the tradition the Big Blue Nation created in camping out for free tickets to our first public practice each season,” Peevy said. “With that, we have a responsibility to communicate with our fans that are camping out that we are near our capacity of tickets available for distribution.”
A maximum of four (4) control cards per tent will be issued to those camped out on Friday, Oct. 4, beginning at 2 p.m. ET. Fans will receive a maximum of four (4) free tickets per control card on Saturday morning. Fans with control cards are encouraged to begin lining up for Saturday morning’s ticket distribution between 5-6 a.m. ET on Saturday, Oct. 5. All fans must be present to obtain their control cards on Friday and only one control card per person will be accepted at distribution. All persons with control cards must be in line by 7 a.m. ET on Saturday.