This more recent ticket for a 1969 performance of "Hair" at the Aquarius Theater in LA was given to me recently by my neighbor. It may not necessarily be as visually interesting, but I rather like it with all the Futura cap letters, various weights and sizes, and the oddly random alignment. It was also just like every other ticket around at the time. (I'd file it under "theatrical typography" ;)
This particular ticket actually does take me somewhere. It takes me back to the 30th National Square Dance Convention I attended 33 years ago. I wasn't there to dance, but dropped by as a spectator, with my camera. I hadn't squared danced since I did the hokey pokey on roller skates at the local "Skateland" roller rink when I was a kid. No, I just came to watch from the stadium bleachers, as a group of 28,000 twirling (NOT twerking;) square dancers set a world record for the largest number to dance to one caller. It was a wonder to behold. To see these adorable couples—some as old as 80+ years—in their his-and-her matching ensembles parading into the stadium against a wall covered with anarchy symbols and "The Clash" graffiti, was every bit worth the $1 admission. (Sadly, my 35mm slides of that day have never been digitized, or I would include some here.) I guess I saved this ticket all these years as a happy reminder, but I never noticed until today, the scowling faces of the two dancers.
All of the tickets above are from my personal collection, but the random variety below are recent unearthed eBay finds, all costing more than their original admission fee. Many more can be found there.
Most commercial tickets today are printed digitally, which don't hold the same fascination. Roll tickets with consecutive numbers are an exception, and are still available. One name which frequently pops up in the world of specialized ticket printing is the Globe Ticket Company. In fact, you can see their name printed at the bottom of a few of these amusement park tickets and the earlier "Hair" ticket. The story of the Globe Ticket Company goes back to 1868, when 12 year-old Walter Hering found a $5 bill on a Philadelphia street and used it to purchase a small printing press. He took in small print jobs for calling cards, and soon outgrew the small room in his house. Years later, his business expanded to printing large ticket orders for theater companies in New York and Philadelphia. In 1900, he built a larger facility, the Globe Ticket Company Building, at the site of his birthplace in Philadelphia. In 1984 this was listed on the National Register of Historic Places for preservation. I guess Walter printed his own ticket to fame and fortune. All for a $5 investment in a printing press.