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KATS Fans Meets Nickelback – First Person Account

Many of our KAT House members got to meet Nickelback at the Tacoma Dome on June 23rd with one of them even winning a Benton guitar. Here’s what it’s like to be a winner.


This is from Gary Heslop:
I got to tell ya a little story: It started with a Loyal KATS listener, Mark Briggs turning us on to the Nickelback song Animals in late 2008, I was hooked. I had to have that CD All the Right Reason and the next Dark Horse, after one listening I knew I had to see these guys. So in January 2009 I checked out the tour dates and they hadn’t announced their summer tour yet. But there was a date April 11, 2009 in Dallas TX that caught my eye. See I’m a tax accountant and April each year is when I’m the busiest and working like 90 – 100 hours a week, but I knew I wanted to see these guys so I booked the trip. My wife described it as the best weekend of her life, only took me 18 years to get one right apparently. When we got back we agreed we had to see them at the Gorge. Our kids got hooked on them from the get go also. We decided to make the Gorge concert an adult trip, but the kids also wanted to go. So I got tickets for the concert at Ridgefield the night before the Gorge concert and we drove down there on Friday night, drove home that night got back into Grandview @ 2:45am on Saturday and then drove up on Saturday afternoon in my motor home and saw them again that night.

We saw them again in May 2010 in Portland. When they released their new CD Here & Now, I order 3 CD’s, one for each of our vehicles. When they announced their 2012 tour one date jump out to me, June 21, 2012 in Portland, my 50th birthday. I knew I wanted to spend my 50th with Nickelback. And what a birthday it was. When Chad Kroeger was headed back to the main stage during the concert, my daughter Kayla yelled at him “I Love You Chad” and he yelled back “I love you to” and threw her his guitar pick. Friday morning the 22nd, we got a call from a friend and another KATS listener, John Drake, his wife won the MEET & GREET contest with KATS. He knew what kind of Nickelback fans or maybe freaks we were and offered them to us. During the Meet & Greet, we entered my daughter’s name into a drawing for a signed, Nickelback Gibson guitar, and she WON it. The band members are just wonderful guys, each one of them said something to my daughter Kayla that was sweet and she said she’ll never forget. When we left she was crying so hard. I told the band members that I think Crack Cocaine would have been cheaper to get hooked on to than Nickelback. Mike Kroeger said, “ya but it wouldn’t be as much fun and it’s not something you would want to share with your daughter like this”.

During the concert she held the guitar and must have had 30 strangers come up and take a picture of the guitar, she felt like a “ROCKSTAR”.

A special thanks from my family to all that made this a weekend we will never forget.


If you think you can never win, you’re not going to win if you don’t try. Just like all of these guys won a trip in the Gibson lounge and one winner won the signed Gibson guitar, you can win in our next contest.

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