Jackson Memorial Lottery Draws 1.6 Million Names; Lucky 8,750 to be Picked Monday Today
1.6 million people signed up to be eligible to win tickets to attend Tuesday's highly anticipated public memorial service for late music icon Michael Jackson, according to MyFoxLA. The Staples Center's website caved under the pressure of the hits several times since the lottery was announced and until the cut off time last night at 6 p.m. local time. Initially the registry was open only to US residents, but soon expanded to allow anyone around the world to sign up for the chance to win a pair of tickets to the event, about which few details are known, save that there will be no funeral procession, and that it will cost the City of Los Angeles a pretty penny to host.8,750 names will be selected at random, which will distribute "11,000 people to the Staples Center plus 6,500 in the Nokia Theater overflow section next door."
The drawing was rescheduled from today until tomorrow, according to KFWB.* Fans who do not receive passes are being urged to stay home and watch the service on television or the internet; there will be no big screen broadcast on the plaza of LA Live, and the LAPD have already begun to close down streets around the venue. A Jackson family rep explained they are carefully checking the entries in the lottery to eliminate duplicates and automated "go-bot" entries, and will be vigilant about checking wristbands and regulating potential scalpers.
Early predictions indicate hundreds of thousands of people will attempt to flood the area on Tuesday regardless of their ticket status, which means our LAPD will be working overtime to keep things in order. Yesterday, City Councilwoman and Mayor Pro Tem Jan Perry asked the public to consider making donations to help defray the cost of the memorial, much like how L.A. afforded to host last month's Lakers NBA Championship parade. This morning will find Rev. Al Sharpton also making a plea; he'll be at the First A.M.E. Church in South L.A. calling for a National Day of Mourning, and for the US Postal Service to issue a Michael Jackson stamp--something done traditionally at least 5 years following a person's death.
*The AP has retracted their mistaken report that tickets will be delayed one day. [KTLA via Twitter]