The Dead Auction Off Front Row Tickets For Charity

It was time, says The Dead’s Bob Weir, to give charitable causes a boost while directing a kick to the hindquarters of ticket scalpers.

So he and his bandmates announced Tuesday they have held back some of the best seats for their forthcoming spring tour, and are putting them up for bid in an online auction.

Want to sit in the third row, center-stage-right, for the tour’s opening show April 12 in Greensboro, N.C.? The bidding starts at $250 at

 Proceeds will benefit a number of charities the group has supported for years, including its Rex Foundation, which was established by the Grateful Dead in 1983 and provides grants to support the arts, science, education and other causes.

 "Needless to say, like any charity these days, their revenues are down right now. They’re hurting," Weir said Tuesday in a phone interview. "We want to do what we can to keep these folks up and running and in business."

 Successful bidders won’t be able to collect their tickets until the day of a show to minimize scalping, Weir said.

 Weir said he hoped the auction would raise at least $250,000. Other charities the group is supporting include the Further Foundation, which works for environmental and social causes; the Unbroken Chain Foundation, which supports community service projects; and the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, which is dedicated to protecting oceans and marine life.

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