It's not often Crew supporters have the chance to interact and mingle with players and staff. Ahead of the club's Opening Match on Saturday, the team held its annual Supporters' Summit on Tuesday night with special guests Crew President and General Manager Mark McCullers, Technical Director Brian Bliss, Head Coach Robert Warzycha and defenders Josh Williams and Gláuber available for questions.
The event was open to Nordecke season ticket holders and active members of supporters' groups. Fans were able to ask any question they wanted to the panel. Topics ranged from Goal 10K progress to Robert Warzycha's jacket.
"Every year that the Crew tries to do something like this, it's great to actually have that connection between fans and the Front Office, players, coaches-- the whole spectrum," Supporter Aaron Angel said. "That's what sets this team apart from everyone else, they're so close with the community and continually striving to keep that relationship open. The dialogue between the two sides is always formal, always cordial."
"It's always great interacting with the players," fellow supporter Julia Oesch added. "I'm a huge Josh Williams fan, and he knows it. He's always so cordial, all of the players are. They always want to just sit talk, give you a hug and say 'Hi.' It's always a great experience meeting Robert [Warzycha] and the Front Office. They're really relaxed and they want to get to talk to us, which is nice."
For Williams, its was a nice change of pace from typically interacting with fans through Twitter.
"You can kind of put a face to a Twitter name now," the defender said. "It's good because you don't normally get to meet fans that much. This is more of a personal setting here. I was a little nervous at first when I didn't know what they would be asking, but they handled pretty well.
"It was fun to get up there and hear some interesting stuff and some funny questions here and there."
Part of what makes soccer -- specifically MLS -- great is the camaraderie among the clubs, players and supporters. Just as the Nordecke shows up week-in and week-out to support the Black & Gold, the Crew shows its admiration for those who support the team through thick and thin. The Columbus Crew would like to extend an invitation to help a supporter during a difficult time.
English Crew supporter and friend of TheCrew.com Daniel Bidmead was recently diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma, a type of cancer that attacks the body's immune system. Fighting the disease head-on, Bidmead has taken it upon himself to raise money for MacMillan Cancer Support by having others shave their heads and wax their legs all in the name of charity.
Bidmead's goal is to raise £500 for the charity and he is well on his way to doing so thus far. Support Daniel and his "Bald for Bidmead" campaign by visiting http://www.justgiving.com/baldforbidmead.
The Hudson Street Hooligans, Crew Union and Arch City Army Present: Massive Support – A Hurricane Sandy Fundraiser.
Saturday night at Hendoc’s bar Columbus pro sports supporters will come together to help do good for the American Red Cross. The event starts at 7pm and will feature celebrity guest appearances, raffle items provided by the Columbus Crew, Columbus Blue Jackets and local businesses and plenty of surprises all night long. Hendoc’s will be helping as well, for each $2 pint of Coors Light, $3 shot of Fireball and $4 Long Island iced tea sold $1 will be donated to the American Red Cross. Besides that raffle tickets will be available to win prizes with 100% of the proceeds going to the American Red Cross.
Hendoc’s is located at 2375 North High Street in North Campus
We should all take a moment today to thank the soccer lords for social media.
How else could a membership manager at Perth Glory Football Club in West Leederville, Australia connect with Columbus Crew fans in Columbus, Ohio?
It all started on August 1, when Chris Edwards individually tweeted all 19 MLS Clubs, asking why he should support each one. A few short days later, the Crew faithful had convinced Chris that he needed to be Columbus ‘Til I Die. In his words, the fans had been brilliant in communicating and engaging with him, which is one of the reasons why he was interested in supporting the club. But for Chris, being able to support the club didn’t just mean being a fan from afar. He wanted to make an impact all the way from Australia, but wasn’t exactly certain how to do so. That was how he and I became connected; one of our season ticket holders recommended he speak to me about some ideas, and we started exchanging (lengthy) emails.
We started to discuss the similarities in the two front offices—Perth Glory plays in the Hyundai A-League, which is incredibly similar in structure to Major League Soccer. Both our clubs played their first season in their respective leagues in 1996. Until Crew Stadium was built in 1999, we started our first few seasons playing out of Ohio Stadium (built for football). Perth has been playing in stadiums structured for cricket or Australian-Rules football as they wait on construction to begin for their updated venue. Michael Garcia and Bobby Despotovski, both former players, work with the club in their front office, just as we’re lucky to have Frankie Hejduk and Duncan Oughton working with ours.
Perth refers to their season ticket holders as “members” of the club, and as a membership manager, Chris works on building their season ticket base. I shared with him the details on Goal 10k and the importance it holds for our club as we get closer and closer to 10,000 season ticket holders. Perth, too, is seeking to reach new membership numbers this season, so we had much to share with each other.
As our conversation turned to talking about the benefits of young players being able to see the game live, it became evident how Chris wanted to support the team. In order to both contribute to Goal 10k and help our local youths, Chris purchased four full season tickets and donated them to Kicks For Kids, a program of the Crew Soccer Foundation. Through Chris’s donation, 72 kids will have the opportunity to see the highest level of the world’s beautiful game live in 2013.
Crew Soccer Nation, please be sure to welcome our new MASSIVE member, Chris Edwards to our family. From the other side of the world, Chris will be touching the lives of our youth right here in Columbus Ohio.
If anyone wants to connect with Chris Edwards…
Perth Glory FC
Written by Crew Season Ticket Account Executive: Melanie Seiser
Today would have been Lamar Hunt's 80th birthday. From all of Crew Soccer Nation, thank you Lamar for your passion and vision for soccer in America!
Crew legend Frankie Hejduk took to the streets of Columbus early Friday morning on a trolley decked out in Black & Gold to rally fans ahead of tomorrow's match against D.C. United. Afterward, Frankie joined 99.7 The Blitz's Loper and Randi on air to help promote the match.
A limited supply of tickets remain for the supporters' trip to Bridgeview this weekend. As of Wednesday afternoon, only five bus spots were open on the two buses the NorOnTour is taking to watch the Crew take on the Fire, according to Kevin McCollough, a member of Crew Union leadership. In all, the supporters groups have sold 205 of the 250 seats in Section 134 at Toyota Park.
To purchase your tickets, head to CrewUnion.com. Tickets will be sold until Friday at noon.
Good news! Our proposed 100-foot signage marquee is another step closer to reality, after unanimous passage (with conditions) by the City Graphics Commission on Tuesday. The Graphics Commission hears requests for variances, special permits, appeals, graphics plans and certain miscellaneous graphics. The Crew’s proposal, for a cylindrical tower on the North side of Crew Stadium facing I-71, will now be considered by the Ohio Expositions Commission, which manages the State Fairgrounds property on which Crew Stadium is located.
Like Brian Bliss and Duncan Oughton, Crew goalkeeper William Hesmer weighed in on his All-Time MLS Best XI. Hesmer deviated from Bliss and Oughton's 3-5-2 formation to go with a 4-1-4-1 look. The veteran 'keeper chose a very American-laden lineup with the exception of Canadian Dwayne De Rosario and former Crew teammate Guillermo Barros Schelotto, check it out:
William Hesmer's All-Time MLS XI (4-1-4-1)
|DF||Carlos Bocanegra||Kasey Keller|
|DF||Chad Marshall||Ryan Nelsen|
|DF||Jeff Agoos||Wade Barrett|
|CDM||Brian Michael Carroll||Marco Etcheverry|
|RW||Landon Donovan||Shalrie Joseph|
|CAM||Dwayne De Rosario||
|CAM||Guillermo Barros essssSchelotto||Jaime Moreno|
|LW||Clint Dempsey||Coach: Jeff Cunningham|
As part of MLS Supporters Week, former MLSers and Crew front office personnel Brian Bliss and Duncan Oughton took the time out of their Monday to choose their All-Time MLS Best XIs. Bliss took the time to list all the candidates he felt were qualified at each position and narrowed the list down one by one. Oughton went the extra mile and included a bench to his list.
Check it out:
Brian Bliss' All-Time MLS XI (3-5-2)
Duncan Oughton's All-Time MLS XI (3-5-2)
|DF||Ryan Nelsen (love for a fellow Kiwi)||Tim Howard|
|DF||Frankie Hejduk||Carlos Bocanegra|
|CDM||Peter Nowak||Chris Armas|
|LM||Mark Chung||Ross Paule|
|CM||Marco Etcheverry||Robert Warzycha (or I might lose my job!)|
|RM||Clint Dempsey||Stern John|
|CAM||Guillermo Barros Schelotto||Jeff Cunningham|
(Note: Oughton only chose ex-MLS players)
Check back TheCrew.com throughout the week for more Crew personalities' All-Time MLS Best XIs.