Forget the World Cup, which had New York City going wild for soccer — errr, football — earlier this summer. The sport is getting its very own day across the five boroughs on Oct. 15, which has been declared NYCFC Soccer Day.
NYCFC Soccer Day will feature players from the New York City Football Club, which has been competing in Major League Soccer (MLS) since 2015. It aims to celebrate the next 10 New York City Soccer Initiative (NYCSI) mini-soccer pitches, which provides free healthy, active living and mentorship programming for kids across the city.
The initiative began in 2016 as a $3 million public-private partnership to create and maintain 50 soccer pitches in underused public spaces in underserved neighborhoods. It has since rolled out across the country, and 20 of those pitches will be in use in New York by yearend.
NYCFC Soccer Day “will be a first-of-its-kind celebration of our sport and is a testament to how soccer is continuing to grow throughout our city,” NYCFC President Jon Patricof said. “Opening new pitches each fall has become a special annual event we look forward to. We have seen how these pitches have become community hubs that bring people together around soccer, and we are proud to be a leader in increasing access to our sport and safe places to play.”
What to expect from NYCFC Soccer Day on Oct. 15
NYCFC Soccer Day will join together fans, player and partner organizations for festivities across New York City. Here’s some of the day’s activities:
An official ribbon cutting will take place as Hostos-Lincoln Academy of Science/PS X010/IS 584/University Prep Charter High School in the South Bronx. Guests include NYCFC first team players Roger Bennett of “Men in Blazers” and more.
Readings from a citywide youth poetry contest centered on soccer as well as matches for kids will also be part of the ceremony.
There will also be ribbon cuttings and NYCFC Soccer Day festivals on all 10 of the new pitches across the city, Goya Foods will hold youth clinics on two pitches and soccer will take over the YES Network.
More than 300 local students will be gifted free tickets to NYCFC’s first home playoff match at Yankee Stadium to celebrate the club clinching the playoffs for three consecutive years.
For more info, visit nycfc.com. NYCSI is supported by NYCFC, US Soccer Foundation, Adidas, Eithad Airways and the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City.