I received a sample for this review/feature. Opinions expressed are my own.
Orlando is generally known as a tourist destination for places like Disney World and Universal Studios, but we also have a soon to be MLS soccer team, the Orlando City Soccer Club.
The Hubby and I decided to hit up a game last weekend. Right now Orlando City SC plays at the ESPN Wide World of Sports out at Disney. We had a delicious dinner out at Downtown Disney since it was basically right next door and then headed over to the sports complex. Parking was so easy here because there are attendants directing you to rows so there was no need to have to circle and hunt -and the best part was parking was free.
Although I've seen many soccer games on TV, I've never actually been a soccer game in person. I was surprised to see there was a lot of tailgating. I'm a big college football fan and tailgating is one of the best parts so I can only imagine how much fun it was to get pumped up for The Lions. They had an entire section just for that with tents, grills, and even bathrooms. There is tailgating for every game from 3:30-6:45pm.
The Hubby and I donned our purple and got to the game as the National Anthem was being sung. That evening The Lions were wearing pink jerseys to raise money and awareness for Women Playing for TIME ? an organization working to make a positive impact on women facing cancer. I love seeing them playing in pink to work towards helping such a wonderful group. Let's just say real men really do wear pink!
Probably one of the best parts of going to the game, aside from watching us dominate on the field, was The Ruckus section. It reminded me of being in the student section of football games when I was in college. It's an area where members of the support group for Orlando City SC sit and get rowdy. They were playing music, cheering, and whenever we scored a goal there was smoke and evening more hooting and hollering from that section. They really make you get into the game and feel some purple pride.
I love how fast-paced soccer is and there was never a dull moment. I found myself jumping and cheering along with the rest of the crowd and really got into the game. I'm happy to report we did win this game and I cannot wait to go to another game. If you're an Orlando resident, you definitely have to go to one of the games. Even if you're only in town visiting, be sure to check out a game. It's a great event for families and gives you a feel for the real Orlando outside of all of the tourist hot spots.