There was the usual ticket "pre-sale" period for a day or so prior to the "on sale" date. Pre-sale is limited to select fans or others who have a special ticket purchase code with only a small number available.
The general public went online fast and furious at 10am March 9 – but many soon saw the post on Ticketmaster.com: "Oh-no! These tickets went fast and we're unable to find more right now." More recent visitors to the ticketmaster website also saw prices above face value.
The same thing happened in many of the other 11 cities on the tour, including Nashville, Atlanta and Seattle.
Even the expensive "SuperVIP and "Soundcheck Experience" tickets were gone, although only a small number were offered.
The DeVos venue capacity is listed at around 2,400.
The secondary market has snapped up some of the tickets, as often happens for high-demand concerts. Over the weekend on stubhub.com, there was a number of Grand Rapids date tickets listed - the cheapest at $89 for a balcony seat – well above face value.
A RICH HISTORY
In any case, the legendary band had a sense that its time was drawing to a close.
"We wanted to give our fans one more chance to see us perform live," said lead singer Mac Powell, 45, in a news release. "The live show has been the core fan experience, and (we want) to say thank you..."
The veteran band has 31 number 1 Christian radio hits to draw from for its final tour set list. There will also be several newer songs (Powell has two solo country albums), and guitarist Mark Lee will be sharing material from his autobiography of last year, "Hurt Road." Special guest artists are participating on select dates, including singer-songwriter Matt Maher.
Third Day has performed at many venues throughout West Michigan, including at DeVos three years ago. The first time this reporter saw them was in 1996 at Sunshine Community Church in Grand Rapids on a tour with fellow bands All Star United and Seven Day Jesus.
In the decades following, the Atlanta-based artists have performed in venues as varied as Kentwood Community Church, Calvin College and Wings Stadium in Kalamazoo. They've also headlined Winter Jam at Van Andel Arena and several times have anchored a night at the Unity Christian Music Festival in Muskegon. Long time fans may recall a sold-out concert in 2001 at the old Welsh Civic Auditorium in Grand Rapids.
ANOTHER WEST MICHIGAN CONNECTION
After three biological children, Powell and his wife Aimee adopted two more kids - at least one of them with the assistance of Grand Rapids-based Bethany Christian Services. Powell was the special guest on a podcast interview about adoption with former Bethany president/CEO Bill Blacquiere. Listen at https://www.bethany.org/blog/every-child-podcast-with-mac-powell
Grand Rapids is fortunate to be one of the dozen select markets to host the Third Day farewell tour. It is the smallest metro area scheduled for the string of shows, which includes Los Angeles, Houston, Dallas and New York City. Even Chicago and Detroit missed the final itinerary in favor of West Michigan.
THE MUSICAL PIECES
The band was on hiatus for much of 2017, although the group did release an album ("Revival"). Last year Powell performed as a solo act at the Unity Festival in Muskegon. For this farewell tour, Powell and Lee will be the only two original members on board. Drummer David Carr stepped away from the road last year.
Several of their 13+ albums were dedicated to worship, as testified by songs such as "Show Me Your Glory," and "God of Wonders." But rockers like "Revelation" still ring with fans who salute Third Day's Southern rock roots.
Social media reaction to the farewell announcement featured comments of all sorts. But nearly every one said thanks to the band who has provided so many musical and ministry memories.
"Although I'm extremely sad that you will no longer be making music together, I am very blessed by the music that you've done all these years," said one FaceBook post. "Thanks for your love and hard work unto the Lord. May your latter years be greater than your former......"
The huge ticket demand saw tour official scramble to add extra shows in Seattle and Atlanta. Whether a second concert can be arranged for Grand Rapids – or a shift to a larger venue – is not yet known. DeVos Performance Hall does not have an event listed for the prior evening (June 21), but on the 23rd Third Day has a scheduled performance in Nashville.
Third Day – Farewell Tour
7:30pm Fri. June 22
DeVos Performance Hall, downtown Grand Rapids
Tickets: $19.92 to $45; VIP $75; $175 Super VIP (tickets may be sold out or listed at higher prices)
Available via Ticketmaster outlets, at DeVos box office, www.ticketmaster.com 800-745-3000