Dean and I have lived in Sandy, Utah for four years, and the first two years we lived here, the Rio Tinto soccer stadium was being built. When an opportunity arose to purchase season tickets, we took the attitude, "We need to support the home team." How many people have a major league soccer stadium within walking distance from their house?! We do.
We toured the stadium before it was complete and picked out our seats. We have season tickets in the "fan section" behind the north goal...8 rows up. 2009 was the first year that Real Salt Lake played in Sandy, Utah, and I never thought I would love soccer games as much as I do. Our Real won the Major League Soccer national championship in 2009, and we screamed our freaking heads off. We thought long and hard about whether we could afford to renew our season tickets for 2010. We decided to make the investment. It's a great way to spend an evening with family and friends, and we've had a lot of enjoyment from our investment.Here are a few reasons why I grew to love soccer so much.
This is a view from our seats. It's an incredible view, and it's so much fun to be right near the north goal and so close to the pitch. This picture was taken last year during the MLS All-Star Game. If you look closely, you can see the ball...in the sky..a bit off to the left...above the cloud line (not really, but in the picture it looks that way). Here is another view from our seats. This was the first game of the 2009 Season against Columbus. Another reason that I love the game so much is because we get to share time with friends and family. This is a picture of me and Dominique at the MLS All Star Game.This is a picture from last night's game against San Jose. Carolyn and Julian Jesse and Elle (my soccer buddy). Of course the game and its players are "the" reason that I've grown to appreciate and love my local soccer team. The following pictures were taken at last night's game against San Jose that ended in a draw. This is also a way to show off my rocking new long distance lens for my Cannon camera. **End of showing of my lens!**
Another thing that I love about my team is that they are fan friendly. Below is Leo the Lion: the team mascot. I love the little leo with him in this picture. The RSL organization is generous with Leo. He welcomed all of the kids at Sandy Elementary back to school last August. The RSL organization has always been willing to donate tickets or memorabilia when I ask on behalf of the PTA. I cannot say enough great things about how fan friendly they are! See this guy (below)? This is Nat Borchers. He happens to be Elle's favorite player. Let me tell you about this guy. Every game, he makes a point to point to the crowd and give the fans a round of applause. How classy and respectful is that! See this guy (below)? This is Javier Morales. He is a wonderful player, and he happens to be Dominique's favorite player. Last summer I dragged Dominique with me to the fan appreciation event that RSL has up at Snowbird. It's a great time! Fans have access to the players and can get autographs and pictures. Those guys were all so gracious and respectful of the fans. They stayed for extra time because there were still folks who wanted to get an autograph. This is Dom posing with Kyle Beckerman (team captain) and Nat. I won Elle a jersey, and Nat signed it for her. She was THRILLED. Dominique was so upset that I gave Elle the jersey that I won. (It was a really nice, authentic jersey worth $100.) I got it for Elle because I knew that it would mean a lot to her. Dom kept working me over for a jersey of her own. I finally gave in and let her get one....which cost considerably less than $100. Her favorite player is Javier (in the background, photo below). She waited in line for a long, long time (TWICE) to get him to sign the jersey. She wears that thing all of the time. The JM that he used as his signature has faded, but she took a sharpie and wrote over it :-) That made me laugh, but it also let me know that she really appreciates the jersey and the signature or at least wants to show it off for her friends...See this kid (below)? I don't even know who he is, but It is a GREAT example of how awesome the guys are during the client event. They are wonderful to the fans! See these guys (below?) This is part of the coaching staff. Coach Jason Kreis is in the middle. He was a player for RSL before he became the head coach. He was recognized by the President at the White House a few weeks ago! Here is the video of the guys being recognized by the President! So proud of them!