Not content to just bring Major League Soccer to Central Florida, it appears Orlando City SC has big plans for the week leading up to opening day.
The Lions will organize a downtown pub crawl, fashion show, movie screening, and 5K road race in the week leading up to the March 8 opener. Their motivation is likely two-fold.
First, this is just another in a long line of community involvement efforts by Orlando City. We've talked about it before; the Lions are really good at it! They've literally planned something for everyone. There's beer, fashion, and fitness events; they're even screening a Will Ferrell movie (Kicking and Screaming) at the Lake Eola Amphitheater. How can you not like at least one of those things?! There's no doubt that these events will be successful at bringing in new potential fans and bringing together current supporters.
Second, the Lions may have an ulterior motive here, and it involves the number 65,000. That's the number of tickets they need to sell to #FillTheBowl on opening day. While the support for the Lions in the city has been incredible, 65,000 is 10-15 times more fans than attended their average home game last year. Upon careful inspection, one notices that most of the events include an opening day ticket in the price of admission. Clever, Orlando City!
So who's the loser in Orlando City's clever ruse? Nobody! We get fun events and insanely good deals on tickets to the Lions' first ever MLS match. Orlando City gets to say they sold out a 65,000 stadium and impress all their new MLS friends. Everybody wins!
You can check out a detailed event schedule here. I know I'll be at the pub crawl and 5K for sure!
Here's a quick summary:
March 3 at 6 p.m.: Soccer and the City
VIP - $150 GA - $50, Church Street Exchange
It's a Sex and the City pun. Get it? Purple/soccer themed fashion show and cocktail event. Price includes a ticket to opening day, one free drink, and a chance to see players rock the new away Jersey in a fashion show.
March 5 at 6 p.m.: Purple Pride 5K
$30 before 3/1, $35 after, Eola Drive
Your standard 5K road race. Sure, it's about 3.1 miles further than I ever like to run, but the proceeds go to funding youth soccer scholarships! You get a T-shirt, exercise, and again, a free opening day ticket.
March 6 at 6:30 p.m.: Soccer Under the Stars
Free, Lake Eola Amphitheater
Bring the family to watch Kicking and Screaming, staring Will Ferrell and Mike Ditka. No free match tickets here, but there will be food trucks, popcorn, and some family-friendly games.
March 7 from 1 to 9 p.m.: Record Breaking Pub Crawl
$25 ($35 after 3/1), Church Street
Now we're talking! Three free drinks, a free opening day ticket, and a live concert. Plus you get to set a world record! I literally couldn't be more sold on this one.
So that's it. There's a little something for every Orlando City fan! Click here for additional info and registration.