As the 2022 FIFA World Cup kicks off in Qatar on Sunday, Lower.com Field will become the Home of Soccer in Central Ohio, as the first-ever Pride & Glory | A Global Soccer Celebration presented by Nationwide begins with a special Community Kickoff event.
The Community Kickoff will be a watch party ahead of the World Cup opener between Qatar and Ecuador, but it’s also an event on World Children’s Day 2022 to bring the community together to celebrate soccer and support the future generation during a Family Resource Fair.
Parking is free at select lots close to the stadium. Click here to plan your route.
Community Kickoff Activities
Doors open for the Community Kickoff at 10:30 a.m. ahead of the Qatar-Ecuador game at 11 a.m. The Pub at Lower.com Field will offer discounted beverages and globally themed, culinary dishes, while the Community Plaza will also showcase the match.
Additionally, the Crew’s community partners will be on hand to celebrate the future generation and provide different resources. Studio 6 Barber & Beauty Lounge will provide haircuts to children, while face paint will be available from A Face Painting Mom.
The inaugural MLS NEXT Pro Cup champions Crew 2 will also be available for photo opportunities and the chance to take a pic with the MLS NEXT Pro trophy. Fans can also take photos with Crew Cat.
Several yard games will be on the Plaza, and kids can play FIFA23 at the Buckeye Mobile Entertainment location.
During the World Cup match, kids from the Crew’s community partners will play soccer on the Lower.com Field pitch.
How Pride & Glory is Amplifying World Children’s Day 2022
For World Children’s Day, UNICEF is calling on partners and supporters to share a positive message of equality and inclusion for every child. World Children’s Day is UNICEF’s annual global day for action for children, by children. From climate change, education and mental health, to ending racism and discrimination, children and young people are raising their voices on the issues that matter to their generation and calling for adults to create a better future.
As the World Cup brings the world together to watch soccer, the Pride & Glory Community Kickoff event is an opportunity to bring the Central Ohio community together and showcase the future generation with a Family Resource Fair.
In addition to the events and opportunities mentioned above, the Crew has teamed up with its corporate partners to be a resource and support Columbus youth and their families.
Here is a list of partners who will be at Community Kickoff:
Adaptive Sports Connection, Cardinal Health (Get a Kick Out of Reading), Columbus City Schools, Columbus Rec and Parks Department, Commission on Black Girls, Community of Caring, Community Refugee and Immigration Services (CRIS), Greater Linden Business Network, Huckleberry House, Kaleidoscope Youth Center, La Mega, Local Matters, Mid-Ohio Food Collective, My Brother’s Keeper, Nordecke, Ohio Hispanic Coalition, One Linden, Sherwin Williams, Special Olympics, St Stephens Community House, Stay in the Game! Network, Studio 6, and The City of Columbus Department of Neighborhoods.
Important Community Kickoff and Pride & Glory Info
The Pride & Glory Community Kickoff is a free, non-ticketed event. Everyone is welcome to attend, and free parking will be available at the Fletcher Lot and 600 Spring Lot.
Doors open at 10:30 a.m., while the Qatar vs. Ecuador match starts at 11 a.m. Following the conclusion of the World Cup match, children from the Crew’s community partners can play soccer on the Lower.com Field pitch.
This is the first of three Pride & Glory main events. The second is Friday, Nov. 25, when the U.S. Men’s National Team takes on England. To celebrate, fans can attend Gold Friday for another day of fun – and hopefully, a Stars and Stripes win! After that match, a special screening of Good Rivals, a three-part docuseries on Prime Video about the heated U.S. and Mexico soccer rivalry, will be shown.
On Dec. 18, Pride & Glory culminates with the conclusion of the 2022 FIFA World Cup. The Pub and the Plaza open at 9 a.m. – an hour before the final kicks off. Fans will be able to watch while enjoying live music on the Plaza while trying food from the Pub and several food trucks before the FIFA World Cup trophy is raised.
During the World Cup, the Crew and its community partners will hold the month-long donation drive presented by Meijer with the goal of collecting 500 soccer balls for the Columbus Recreation and Parks Department, to be distributed to the local rec centers.
Donation bins will be located in Lower.com Field’s Pub and Crew Shop, with fans having the additional option to add a soccer ball to their purchases at the Crew Shop. Additionally, a rolling 50/50 Raffle will be held during the entirety of the World Cup, with proceeds benefitting On Our Sleeves.