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Enjoy Portland through Professional Soccer

Portland Thorns Women's Professional Soccer TeamWe’ve all heard of the incredibly loud and in-sync Timbers Army, or at least the Portland Timbers major league male soccer team they chant for. But were you aware that Portland has a National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) team as well? The Portland Thorns FC play at the same venue as the Timbers, Providence Park, and provide the same amount of entertainment in a family-friendly setting. While the games can be lively, the Timbers Army can be a bit rowdy and the majority of fans seem to be part of the 18+ demographic. If you’re looking to take your little one(s) to a soccer game but worry the Timbers Army may be too loud for their ears, enjoy a Thorns FC game! The games are equally as exciting and entertaining but the crowd is much calmer and tamer. The team still has chant leaders with large drums but the loud areas in the stadium are easy to avoid.

At Thorns FC games, children and parents alike can get their faces painted in red and black for free to show their support for the team. Who doesn’t love free face paint? Not only are the games marketed and designed for families with children, the Thorns FC welcome multiple youth soccer teams to each event. The young female soccer players have the opportunity to see what the professional version of their favorite sport looks like in action and witness some women that can act as positive role models in their lives.

What a lot of Portlanders are unaware of is that one of the Thorns’ key players, Alex Morgan, is an Olympic gold medalist. The team is made up of very talented and experienced players that provide entertaining games to their fans. The Thorns FC even earned the honorable title of 2013 NWSL Champions last year. Good luck this year, ladies!

The Timbers and Thorns FC are both dedicated to community service and outreach through the Stand Together program. The Thorns FC use a 50/50 raffle at each game to raise money for non-profit programs, such as AC Portland. AC Portland puts on after school programs at local Portland schools, including activities such as soccer and basketball while incorporating other lessons such as poetry and nutrition. Spectators at games can purchase raffle tickets and all of the money goes into a pot. When the winning ticket is drawn, that ticketholder receives half of the pot and the other half is given to AC Portland programs. I recently had the opportunity to volunteer with the raffle selling tickets throughout the game and had an incredible experience meeting fans, learning more about where the funds go, and enjoying my first Portland soccer game. It’s great to see Thorns fans can help out the community while enjoying the game!

The Thorns FC are aware that many of the fans that attend the games are families with children that want to enjoy the games in groups. The cost of tickets is reasonably priced at only $10 per game in general admission seating. This allows for a relatively low-cost activity to be available to the soccer fans in Portland. Going out with the family can get expensive but Thorns FC games are an affordable alternative to the movies or an arcade. And it gets the kids outside!

For anyone that has not yet attended a professional soccer game in Portland, I highly recommend the Thorns FC. Whether you’re going out with the family or just with friends, you’re sure to have a good time. This information, as well as more about the Thorns FC, can be found at http://www.timbers.com/thornsfc. Enjoy the game!


Author, and PSU winner of our Enjoy Portland 2014 writing contest, Chandler Paterson, was born and raised right here in Portland, Oregon. She attends Portland State University and absolutely loves it. She recently completed her second year and is excited to see what the next two years will bring. She's an honors student majoring in communication studies and minoring in film studies. After earning her bachelor's, she hopes to attend the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. With Giuliana Rancic as her idol, her dream job is to be a broadcast journalist in the entertainment industry. In the meantime, she practices her on-camera interviewing skills through PSU Television and enjoys dancing on the Portland State Dance Team. She's also a member of the Delta Omicron chapter of Alpha Chi Omega and an Orientation Leader at Portland State. For more of her writing, please visit her personal blog at www.chandlerpaterson.blogspot.com.


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Portland - Unique, Wonderful City of Coffee

Spanish Coffee at Huber's CafePortland's American Barista & Coffee school proudly calls its home town a "unique, wonderful coffee mecca." OregonBusiness.com awarded Portland a High Five for being the "unlikely capital of American coffee culture" for its simple, handcrafted pour over cups of coffee (http://www.oregonbusiness.com/high-five/5098-portlands-coffee-culture-returns-to-pour-over-methods).

Really it's not surprising that a city so serious about microbrewed beers and bottling fine wines would also be part of a movement to produce high-quality, artisan coffee. Coffee Bean International, the city's largest roaster, describes Portlanders as "really interested in that handcrafted, living free kind of thing," and says "coffee falls into that category when you start to learn more about it."


—Mark Tilson



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