We arrived early, almost two and half hours early and were surprised by the enormous crowd of people buzzing around dressed head to toe in Sounder apparel. I thought dressing in Sounder colors was really putting forth some effort on my part, but these people were over the top. Mohawks, team colors striped overalls, t-shirts, jackets, hats, scarfs, backpack and face paint and this was consistently all on one spectator.
I do not know what it is like before every game, but this pre game they had a street fair set up with free food, dunk tank, live music and most importantly face painting. Most of the people in line were parents with small children, but I like to think some of them used their children as a decoy because they were the ones who wanted their face painted. Without a decoy I braved the line solo and ended up with one of my favorite parts of the night..... my face paint. Any excuse to wear glitter on my face is cause for pure excitement.
We had zero expectations for the evening and found ourselves enjoying the company, the game, the crowd and the whole soccer experience. Having played in my youth, I am not new to soccer, but this professional stuff really is in a league of its own. Back in the day, I ate my fair share of half time orange slices, soaked to the bone from a downpour, bruised wherever my shin guards were not and walking away many times with a heavy heart from loosing.
As we walked into the stadium, we saw a large mass of people congregate in Pioneer Square and parade down singing and shouting. The energy from the crowd was electric and once they said "scarves up" before the match everyone really went wild. Any sport which promotes scarf wearing is one I can generally get behind. Cameron's work was a sponsor of The Big Give campaign in Seattle, so we were able to enjoy watching the game with the Seattle Foundation from a suite. We rubbed elbows with the old mayor of Seattle, Norm Rice and his wife and found them not only to be kind, but exceptionally warm and friendly people.