World Cup Soccer Viewing Party: Grant Park, Petrillo Bandshell, US vs Germany

“Newbie Solo Roamers,” please take note! I had a few important things to do yesterday. But, it was lovely outside and I have the good fortune of living in one of the greatest cities in the world, especially in the summer. So, this Solo Roamer walked over to the Petrillo Bandshell in Chicago’s Grant Park where soccer fans both local and visiting gathered for a viewing party of the U.S. vs. Germany in the World Cup soccer game on a huge screen between 10am-2pm. AWESOME!

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Beach ball? Soccer Ball?  What's the difference?  It's a party!

Beach ball? Soccer Ball? What’s the difference? It’s a party!

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What?  Game not going your way?

What? Game not going your way?

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I admit I am not a soccer fan. I was raised in NYC during the time when baseball and American football were KING! Nevertheless, I do know how to rally around an important global sports event, especially to cheer on our home team. Go, U.S.A! Chicago is one of the greatest sports-lovin’ towns on the planet and I just felt it was my moral imperative as a Chicagoan and an American to show up and soak it all in, even if I don’t know the rules of the game. Well, I know the most important rule: Get ball in net 🙂

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Just as with the Stanley Cup frenzy during the past 3 years in Chicago, I came, I saw, I watched, I mingled. Never underestimate how friendly strangers who share a common interest will be (OK, so soccer is not my bag but I like T.V. and going to the park. 2 out of 3 is not bad). It’s like going to Times Square during New Year’s Eve with several thousand strangers. Everyone is lovely, engaging and happy to be part of such a hugely watched event. And yes, some are there just to get interviewed on the local news! Don’t be afraid to experience these happenings by yourself! You’ll be surprised at just how small a world it really is.

World Cup Soccer "Lovers" :)

World Cup Soccer “Lovers” 🙂

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It was such fun to watch people from all over descend upon Chicago to witness this free outdoor soccer event (one of at least 3 such World Cup screenings here). People were friendly, draped in U.S.A. and Germany flags and other garb and loving every last minute of it. What fun! Sure, I could have done something else during the game but why miss out on such a special event in my own backyard? It was a long, brutal winter, kids!

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Future World Cup Soccer stars?!

So, why should I care if my friends were not available and that I am not interested in soccer? No, matter! Just as I thought, I had no lack of conversation with complete strangers from in town and out-of-town. Nice! Oh, in case you didn’t hear yet, the U.S. lost to Germany yesterday. However, they advanced to the next round. The U.S. will face off against Belgium next Tuesday.

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I hope these pictures inspire you to get out of your head, get out of your way and get out of your house (or office)… Solo!

ROAM. REVEL. REPEAT.

Labeled: Culture & Community · Travel