Columbus Crew Celebrate "Soccer for All" Throughout June 2023
COLUMBUS - As part of the club's year-round efforts to advance participation in and a love of the beautiful game, the Columbus Crew will celebrate "Soccer For All" throughout June. Through MLS WORKS' Soccer For All, the Crew and teams across the league emphasize that soccer provides opportunities to unify local communities and people across the globe through their passion for the sport, regardless of race, color, religion, national origin, gender, gender identity, disability, sexual orientation or socioeconomic status.
The Black & Gold will host their Soccer For All themed night, presented by Zenni Optical, at Lower.com Field on Saturday, June 24 against Nashville SC [7:30 p.m. ET / MLS Season Pass on Apple TV / 97.1 The Fan (English); La Mega 103.1 FM (Spanish)]. More information on matchday elements recognizing inclusivity, Pride Month, Juneteenth and participation for individuals of all abilities will be shared at a later date.
Before the game, Crew players will wear pre-match tops displaying "LOVE UNITES," along with other MLS teams in June. Club personnel - led by Captain and Midfielder Darlington Nagbe, Midfielder Aidan Morris and Goalkeeper Patrick Schulte - recently engaged with local community leaders during a photo shoot in Downtown Columbus.
The Crew are dedicated to supporting the Columbus community through their education and youth soccer initiatives. The month-long Soccer For All programming further highlights how the club brings people together through soccer, the world's sport that transcends all borders and demographics.
The Black & Gold will celebrate Columbus on 614 Day (Wednesday, June 14) by hosting multiple events for youth and community groups at mini-pitches across the city. Crew leadership, First Team players and Crew 2 members will contribute to the festive atmosphere at each location while interacting with the next generation of footballers to help inspire a passion for the game, along with other activations. Local community leaders onsite include Columbus City Schools; Columbus Rec and Parks; Adaptive Sports Connection; Ohio Blind Soccer; Ronald McDonald House Charities Central Ohio; Kaleidoscope Youth Center; Big Brothers Big Sisters Hispanic Mentorship; Girls on the Run; Mid-Ohio Food Collective; Whitehall YMCA and more.
The Crew has installed five mini-pitches in Greater Columbus during the past four years. The mini-pitches are part of the club's commitment to grow the game and strengthen youth engagement and the local communities overall.
Columbus City Schools is a partner district of the "Stay in the Game!" Network, focused on promoting attendance and classroom engagement throughout Ohio. Today, the Crew hosted a clap-in at Ohio Avenue Elementary School and a clap-out at Linden McKinley STEM Academy to congratulate students and faculty for their commitment to education and carry that momentum into a summer of fun and continued learning. The Black & Gold helped fund Linden-McKinley STEM Academy's soccer team by providing cleats and equipment in 2022.
Through the partnership with Columbus City Schools, the Crew has hosted multiple clap-ins and clap-outs in the past two years to show appreciation for schools', families' and students' efforts to support Ohio's youth and future. The club also engages the district and advances learning through the Get A Kick Out of Reading campaign.
In addition to installing mini-pitches, the Crew implement Soccer for Success programming at Columbus elementary schools. Soccer for Success is the U.S. Soccer Foundation's signature soccer program designed for children ages 6-14 and intended to help children establish physical, social and emotional health skills.
Crew players and staff live, work, play in Columbus and fully embrace the city as their home. The club appreciates that Black & Gold supporters come from all walks of life and represent the diverse, evolving region that continues to experience remarkable growth. The Crew are honored to work with many local community organizations every year, many of which are from underrepresented groups.
For more information, visit ColumbusCrew.com/community.
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