Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Ceus Named to USL-2 Team of the Week; Loan Updates

The United Soccer Leagues announced today their Team of the Week honors for Week 12 which included Rapids goalkeeper Steward Ceus.

Ceus recorded four saves in his first shutout in USL-2 action on Saturday, as Charlotte earned a 0-0 draw with table leading Harrisburg.

Steward has started in two games this season for the Eagles since joining the team on loan for the remainder of the MLS season.

In other Rapids loan news, defender Mike Holody played the full 90 minutes in his first appearance for Real Maryland on Monday, as former Colorado goalkeeper Justin Hughes shutout Crystal Palace Baltimore 1-0.

Defender Ty Harden also made his first loan appearance over the weekend playing 90 minutes in Rochester’s 2-1 win over Minnesota. Former Rapids ‘09 SuperDraft pick Kwame Adjeman-Pamboe registered an assist in the match.

Ciaran O’Brien and the Austin Aztex did not play over the weekend with their next match scheduled for tomorrow night against the Houston Dynamo in U.S. Open Cup competition.
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Get to Know Monsieur Baudet: Q&A With Julien


ColoradoRapids.com was able to sit down with newly-signed Rapids defender Julien Baudet for an exclusive interview after training today.

He speaks excellent English, in case you were wondering, given his recent spell in England.

Check out everything you need to know about Julien below!

ColoradoRapids.com:
How much did you know about MLS before coming to the United States?

Julien Baudet: "Not a lot, to be fair to you. When David Beckham came to the play it was a big thing in England. After that I got into watching some MLS games. Then, funny enough, a couple weeks later I got a call from my agent saying that I had a club in the MLS that was interested."

CRC: Had you ever been to the US before?

JB: "Yeah, I went to Texas 15 years ago. My sister came over for a year, staying with a family. So my family came to visit her for 2 weeks. Still, I was pretty young, so all I can remember is nice weather and water parks! It was a good first experience, and here I am again."

CRC: After watching MLS games in person, how do you feel professional soccer in the US differs from England?

JB: "I think we can all agree that, you know, the soccer in England is much quicker. You have to be on your toes, because you get pressured quicker at every area of the pitch. And now I’ve gotten to watch 2 Rapids games so far, and it looks like there is more time on the ball and it is just different. But yeah it’s just another aspect of the game, but the level of play I've seen has been good so far."

CRC: What excites you most about playing in the US?

JB: "You just have to look around. It’s a beautiful stadium. It’s another lifestyle. I started my career in France and then I went to England for 8 years and now it’s a new challenge. I was really looking for a fresh challenge at the end of my English contract and I mean, it doesn’t come better than a challenge like this, and it's one that I am really looking forward to. And now I just need to get back in shape and back into fitness. And hopefully they will ask me to play on the 18th of July." [the first league match Baudet would be eligible to play in]


CRC:
You were born in France. Was soccer your only reason for moving to England?

JB: "Yes, because I started my career in Toulouse. I signed my first professional contract in Toulouse. It was a 4 year contract and I really enjoyed my time over there. We got promoted in '98 to the top division in France and I was a part of that squad. I think I played in 28 games. That was my break-through in French futbol. Then the year after, I started the year with an injury and the manager got sacked and when the new one came in he didn’t like me. So I spent a year without playing really. And after that year the club found itself in a financial irregularity and so they got relegated 3 divisions. And you don’t want to play in the third division in France because it is rubbish. So that’s why I headed up to England, and that’s where I ended up playing the 8-9 years of English ball."

CRC: How was it different playing in England than in France?

JB: "It was only my first year when I started playing in France. So you see, it was the first time you play in a big stadium, you play against professional players, so it was something really new for me, something really big for me. And then when I moved to the UK, I was kind of ready because I had already played a full year in the French League, so I knew what it was all about. But when I went to the UK, obviously once again, the speed of the game and the physical aspect of the game was so different. Hopefully, after 8-9 years in England speed is something I can bring to MLS."

CRC: With all that moving around, where do you consider your hometown?

JB: "That is in France, the southeast of France in the Alps. This is where my parents live and it is a place where I like to go back to whenever I can. It is a place about 10 minutes away from Grenoble. It is a little town, but it is gorgeous. I go back during holidays or whenever. I always like to find time because it is a place I like to go and spend a couple days."

CRC: Have you always played at defender?

JB: "No (laughx). I started as a right wing, funny enough. When I started playing, I was a right wing or a striker because I was strong and quick and I have a pretty strong shot. So every time I had the ball on the attacking half I was shooting and I was scoring a lot of goals. Then, when I started playing in the higher levels, I was told that I should not play on the right wing and that I needed to play in the back. They said I could do well in the back because of my passing range and physical presence. Since then, I think that I have had a decent career in the back, and I have never looked back."

CRC: You scored a couple goals as a defender in your career, haven’t you?

JB: "Yes, headers from corners and set pieces. I love going and attacking the ball, that is what I am really strong with. And I have also scored a couple of free kicks....I consider myself a pretty good free-kick taker. I think we are going to try and have me work on free kicks." [for the Rapids].

CRC: So we heard you are a big skier. Is it true you had to decide between professional skiing and soccer? What made you choose soccer?

JB: "Yes, well obviously when you are born in the Alps, it is easy to go up and ski a lot. My parents took me up to ski every weekend so I really got into skiing and I was getting really good at it, but I came to a certain stage in my career, when I was younger, where I was playing fotball with Grenoble. There was a lot of traveling involved and there wasn’t time to go skiing every weekend. It was just a choice I had to make but I think deep down it has always been soccer anyway."


CRC:
So Crewe fans gave you the nickname “The Beast” in England. What aspect of your game do you think this refers to?

JB: "When you are 6’3 and 95 kilos like I am, the first thing that any manager or any person is going to look at is your physical presence. The Beast was given to me for my performance at the back."

CRC: Is there anything else you would like Rapids fans to know about you?

JB: "I would like them to make up their own minds about me, but that is going to be based on how I play week in and week out. And that is something I am really looking forward to."
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Monday, June 29, 2009

Rapids Academy Alumni: Q &A With Ryan Kawulok


Most young soccer players dream of starting at a Division I soccer program. Ryan Kawulok, a 6’2” defender of the University of Portland, did it 20 times..... as a freshman.

Just last year, Kawulok was a member of the Colorado Rapids Soccer Academy.

As a member of the Rapids Soccer Academy, Kawulok racked up many honors. From his first year he captained each of the Rapids teams he played on, even leading them to the Super-Y League National Championships just six months after the creation of the program. He was also awarded the 2008 Colorado Rapids Academy Player of the Year award.

His stellar play didn’t go unnoticed, and earned him the opportunity to play for Coach Bill Irwin at the University of Portland, where current Colorado Rapids and United States forward Conor Casey attended.

When asked about Ryan’s early contribution, Irwin had this to say about his star defender:

“He’s been a tremendous asset to our program. He’s got great heart and a strong desire to get better. He came in and started every game for us and contributed a lot. I think it can be very difficult as a freshman but Ryan handled it very well.

"He came in and won his position in preseason with a tremendous attitude and great work ethic. He was battling against guys who had already been here, but he won the spot and now it’s his to lose.”

During his offseason, Kawulok is now back training with the Colorado Rapids, but this time it’s not with the Development Academy. He is spending his summer training with the first team and giving back to the organization that helped prepare him to be the player that he is today.

The Rapids Academy was able to speak with Kawulok about his recent experiences.

Rapids Academy: You played on the inaugural Rapids Development Academy team. How did this experience differ compared to playing in Colorado Youth Soccer?

Ryan Kawulok: “It was different because of the level of professionalism. Being able to use the locker rooms, and seeing the professional players and coaches come out just down the hall, was just really exciting. It just seemed a lot more professional.”

RA: How important was your time with the Rapids while you were preparing for collegiate soccer?

RK: “It was incredibly important. I received good training and got to travel and play against the best teams in the nation, which prepared me for the travel and good competition week in and week out at the collegiate level.”

RA: What does it mean to you to be training with the Rapids' first team?

RK: “It means a lot to me. It’s a great opportunity. It’s incredibly competitive and that makes me become a better player. It’s a great opportunity to learn from the professional players and coaches.”

RA: While at Portland, you got to play in a spring game against Seattle Sounders FC. What was the experience like to play against MLS competition?

RK: “It was awesome. To be able to play on the same field as guys like Kasey Keller, who has accomplished everything you can in soccer, was awesome. It was also very eye-opening to see how hard the professional players work. It was their preseason, so a lot of their players were working really hard to earn a roster spot. The discipline and focus was what stood out to me. It didn’t matter who they were playing, they stayed disciplined and focused, and that was pretty cool to see.”

RA: You also help give back to the Rapids Academy by coaching at their Development Camps. What do you enjoy about coaching these camps?

RK: “I enjoy the little kids. Seeing how much fun they have while I’m teaching them new skills is really fun. It’s good to give back to these kids through a game that has been so good to me.”


Kawulok is making sure he takes advantage of every opportunity that comes his way. His desire to improve keeps him focused and motivated. As he finishes up this summer’s training with the Rapids, he keeps in mind that training is only the beginning of what he wishes to accomplish. As he heads back to Portland this fall, he will keep with him the memories of his summer days at Dick's Sporting Goods Park, hoping to collect new ones in the future.

He embraces the challenges that lie ahead with confidence, but it’s his passion and strong desire to improve that will carry him as he tries to earn a permanent spot with the Rapids in the future.

That would be just one more incredible accomplishment to add to his already impressive list of achievements.
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Friday, June 26, 2009

Fury of Roster Activity

The Rapids experienced a busy day on the roster front Friday with one player being waived and three more loaned out to USL clubs.

The team officially announced today that forward Gregory Richardson was waived. Richardson’s only appearance for the Rapids was in the season opener against Chivas USA in the final 11 minutes.

In other roster moves, goalkeeper Steward Ceus is on loan to the USL Second Division’s Charlotte Eagles for the remainder of the season and defenders Ty Harden and Mike Holody go on loan as well to USL clubs.

Harden will join the First Division’s Rochester Rhinos till July 25 and Holody goes on loan to Rapids partner club and Second Division side Real Maryland 'til August 31.

Ceus made his debut for the Eagles this past Saturday in a 2-2 draw with Richmond and is expected to play in Charlotte’s match tonight against Harrisburg.

Ceus, Harden and Holody join Ciaran O’Brien as the other Rapids players to go on loan this season.

O’Brien is currently with the USL-1 Austin Aztex for the remainder of the season and has appeared in three games.
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Thursday, June 25, 2009

Casey Checks In From South Africa After "The Win"


Rapids striker Conor Casey took time to send fans a quick update from South Africa following the Americans' historic win over Spain in the Confederations Cup semifinals.

With Brazil's win over South Africa today, the Yanks have a daunting task in the final this Sunday, but as Casey says, are up for the task!

Here's Casey's comments from the US camp:

"Hey how's it going everyone back in Colorado!

Last night was really exciting. After our big win over Egypt, and the unexpected result from the Italy vs Brazil game, we felt like we had nothing to lose against Spain.

We came out with a lot of energy and were able to put them under some pressure in the first half.

In the second half, we defended extremely well, and we were able sustain their attacks.

To break Spain's 35-game win streak and advance to the final was really special.

Now we are just getting ready for Brazil, again! Everyone here is just excited, we know it's gonna be a tough game on Sunday. But just to let everyone know, we are ready.

Talk to you soon,"

-Conor
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Monday, June 22, 2009

Inside The Game - June 20

video
Here's the extended-edit edition June 20 episode of "Inside the Game" from the Rapids Game Entertainment dept.

Field Reporter Lauren Cisneros from Donna Baldwin Talent, Inc. (view her bio page here) goes behind the scenes on the 2009 Festival of Women, which took place prior to the match at the stadium on Saturday.

This year's Rapids Inside the Game video features are presented by the Donna Baldwin Modeling Agency, so be on the lookout for special guest field reporters all year long!
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Saturday, June 20, 2009

Rapids Close to Announcing International Exhibition


The Rapids are working on a potential deal to bring to Colorado an international exhibition match vs. Mexican powerhouse Club America.

The game would be projected to fall sometime during the week of July 12-18 at Dick's Sporting Goods Park.

This game would be included in Rapids season ticket holders' season plans as their 'Special Match 1' ticket.

Look for an official announcement in the near future if the deal becomes finalized.
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Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Rapids & Guerrero to Part Ways


The Rapids Media Relations Department will announce later today that the Rapids and defender Ivan Guerrero have come to an agreement to terminate his contract with the club.

New striker Pat Noonan will take over the #12 jersey from Guerrero.

Look for an official annoucement soon on the Rapids' website.
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Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Rapids Top Foxes 5-1 in Scrimmage


The Rapids defeated the Real Colorado Foxes PDL side 5-1 in a scrimmage today on the Rapids' official training pitch at DSG Park.

The whistle blew to kick off the game at 2:00pm and both teams endured a sweltering 90 minute battle in the 89-degree heat.

Several guest players saw action for the Rapids against Lorne Donaldson's Foxes....Rapids fans will remember Lorne from his time as a Rapids Assistant Coach.

Rapids striker Ross Schunk recorded a hat trick in the match.

RAPIDS VS. FOXES MATCH TRACKER:
0:00 Kickoff!
4:00 Rapids- corner kick, Foxes keeper Griffith makes the save.
7:00 Rapids- #27 Kimura takes a shot but it is over the frame of the goal.
7:00 Rapids- shot on goal by #13 Schunk but it is saved by the Foxes' 'keeper.
9:00 Rapids- shot on goal by #13 Schunk but again it is saved.
9:00 Rapids- corner kick heads near post but no goal is scored.
10:00 Rapids- #20 takes a shot but it is too high.
16:00 Rapids- shot on goal by #13 Schunk but the keeper makes an easy save.
21:00 Rapids- GOAL by #13 Schunk, assisted by #26 Holody.
22:00 Rapids- shot by #27 Kimura but it goes wide right
24:00 Foxes- shot on goal by #8 Craig Thompson.
26:00 Rapids- shot by #13 Schunk goes over the net.
35:00 Rapids- GOAL by #13 Schunk, assisted by #27 Kimura.
40:00 Rapids- yellow card given out to #34.
45:00 -Halftime - Score is 2-0 Rapids
50:00 Rapids- #33 takes a shot on goal but Griffith makes the save.
51:00 Rapids- GOAL by #27 Kimura, assisted by #16 Richardson.
52:00 Rapids- GOAL by Rapids guest player #34, assisted by #16 Richardson.
53:00 Rapids- foul committed right outside of the box.
53:00 Foxes- free kick on goal but Ceus makes the save.
58:00 Rapids- shot on goal with a header by #34. Follow up shot by #27 Kimura.
60:00 Rapids- shot taken by #27 Kimura, shot goes high.
60:00 Foxes- substitution #19 James King for #17 Julian Donaldson.
68:00 Rapids- shot on goal by #13 Schunk.
71:00 Rapids- foul by #35 Valentino.
73:00 Rapids- foul by #3.
74:00 Rapids- foul by #26 Holody.
78:00 Foxes- shot on goal by #6 Banghart.
83:00 Foxes- foul by #15 Zelin.
85:00 Foxes- GOAL by #16 Cephers.
86:00 Rapids- yellow card given to #28.
89:00 Rapids- GOAL by #13 Schunk.
90:00 -Match ended @ 3:30 MT- Final Score: Rapids 5, Foxes 1

Rapids, Foxes

Total Shots: 18, 5
Shots on Goal: 12, 4
Total Saves: 3, 7
Fouls: 8, 6
Offsides: 2, 0
Corner Kicks: 3, 4
Yellow Cards: 2, 0

Thanks to all the fans that attended. Your support through the heat meant a lot to both teams!
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Monday, June 15, 2009

Welcome to Our New Striker

Hello Rapids fans,

I just want to let you all know that we executed a trade today with the Columbus Crew for forward/midfielder Pat Noonan.

We had been looking to bolster our front line for some time now and have finally been able to do that with this trade. The great thing about Pat he fits a need, can play multiple positions, is only 28 and is good in the locker room. For us it was a great fit.

There is no doubting Pat's abilities and productivity over the years. He has almost a goal and assist every 3 games over the course of his career. Also, he has a great deal of experience with successful teams in this league and we will be counting on him to bring this to the table as we build upon our good start to the season this far.

Pat has had some injury history in the past and we did our due diligence in gaining background on these issues and felt really comfortable that there were no long term effects that would affect his performance. We are excited to get him started and our fans should be looking forward to seeing him as an exciting attacking option for the Rapids for years to come.

Please be on the look out for more exciting news in the near future...

Thanks,

Paul Bravo
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Rapids to Scrimmage Foxes Tomorrow


The Colorado Rapids will scrimmage the Real Colorado Foxes PDL team tomorrow, Tuesday June 16th.

Kickoff will be at 2:00pm on the Rapids' training field at Dick's Sporting Goods Park.

The Foxes team play in the USL Premier Development League – the top U23 men’s amateur league in North America. The PDL is the development ground for elite players who aspire to continue their careers at the highest level. Most of the players in the PDL are current top-level college players. Players in the PDL maintain their amateur status and their college eligibility.

The head coach of the Foxes is ex-Rapids asst. coach Lorne Donaldson.

The scrimmage is free and open to fans who may wish to attend.
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Jamaican Heritage Nite Preview


This weekend we filmed the Inside the Game footage for our July 11th game against FC Dallas. That night is Jamaican Heritage Nite, so we went to the Ziggy Marley concert with Omar Cummings and Kosuke Kimura (side note: They are attached at the hip. Total BFF's, but that story is for another episode)

Luckily for us, Ziggy Marley caught wind of our Jamaican Nite and wanted to meet Omar! Knowing that Ziggy is a huge soccer fan, we decided to bring him his own Rapids jersey with his own name and number on it. He appreciated that and then offered to make a special video message for the Rapids fans on July 11th!

So Omar, Kosuke and our video crew headed up to gorgeous Red Rocks for the concert and to meet Ziggy! When we got there we were greeted by Ziggy's tour manager Janine (who was super helpful), and brought onto Ziggy's tour bus! Omar was so excited to meet one of his country's great exports, not to mention that Omar and Kosuke are HUGE fans!

Ziggy was incredible. He is really charming, funny, humble and has a great admiration for professional soccer players. Omar and Ziggy talked for 20 minutes about Jamaica, soccer, the altitude, life, the Rapids season, Omar playing for Jamaica more in the future, and more stuff that I couldn't quite understand. Their accents came out thick when they started getting comfortable. It was awesome to see!

After our time was up and Ziggy needed to get ready for the concert, he thanked us all for coming to visit and posed for the picture with the guys. We had to be careful with the flash due to the filming, so that is why it is a little blurry. You can watch the Inside the Game video footage at the July 11th Rapids game and the day after on the Undercurrent when we post the full video.

Seeing a professional athlete meet a superstar rock star is amazing. Both Ziggy and Omar were excited to meet someone from their island, and seemed like old friends after 10 minutes. Kosuke was just starstruck the whole time and really didn't say anything. It was pretty funny!

Look for the Inside the Game video pre-game on July 11th when the Rapids celebrate Jamaican Heritage Nite. And don't miss the special message from Ziggy as well right before kickoff!

Respect Mon!
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Friday, June 12, 2009

Lindsay's SLC Road Trip Diary


What do you call a good looking girl in Salt Lake City? That's right, a tourist!

Rapids "Inside the Game" Hostess and Donna Baldwin Talent model Lindsay Carroll joined Rapids supporters on the club's road trip to Utah for the June 6 match at Salt Lake; check out here exclusive diary below!

LINDSAY'S ROAD TRIP DIARY
"We had been waiting for this weekend for a while, and when it was finally time to go, I woke up and rolled out of bed here in Boulder on Saturday, June 6th at 7:15 in the morning, anxious to get on the road. My roommate, Brittany and I were pumped and ready to embark on our expedition to good ol’ Sandy, Utah!

We piled everything into the back of my silver Honda and went to pick up our friend Diana. Being girls, of course we packed way too many clothes. We had made a pit stop at the Wal-Mart down the road the night before in preparation for the trip, so in addition to the clothes, we had two coolers full of food.

Our plan (being broke college students) was to save money by bringing our own food and drinks. Our 'mobile kitchen' included bagels, fruit, Jell-O, trail mix, Lunchables (can’t go wrong there), and my personal favorite, CANDY!! What’s a road trip without the excuse to munch out on mouth-watering junk food, right?!

Our goal was to leave Colorado around eight o’clock in the morning to arrive in Utah by four that afternoon. According to MapQuest, the distance from Boulder (our starting location) to Sandy, Utah was 531.79 miles, with an estimated time of 7 hours and 39 minutes!

We brought along Carrie Underwood, Lady Gaga, Britney Spears, and other similar girly artists to give us something to sing along with. I wanted to keep the ride exciting so I visited momsminivan.com. I would recommend this website to any Rapids fans who will be roadtriping to any future games! All I have to say is, it's incredible!

That site has over 101 car/road trip/travel games! I printed Backseat Battleship, travel scavenger hunts (which by the way – log trucks are impossible to find), roadside items and vehicles/cars bingo sheets, and my personal favorite, the license plate game!

We started out on I-25 N/US 87 for almost 70 miles and merged onto I-80 W entering into Wyoming. After a ton of snack eating, story telling, and laughing about silly sign names, 427.2 miles later, we arrived in Utah!

Utah is picturesque; there were many parts of Utah that reminded me of the drive from Denver to Grand Junction on I-70. It was very green, scenic, and breathtaking. Brittany and Diana actually attempted to count all of the cows that we could find on the way there, but there were so many that they lost count after awhile.

I had my hopes set on finding a rest stop with the “world’s largest rocking chair” or something, but the closest thing we found and actually stopped to see, was Little America. As far as the license plate game went, we were successful in finding 19 states. Even though I am home now, I find myself still looking for the Maine, New York, and Hawaii plates.

Once we arrived, we were excited to stretch after the long car ride, and even more excited that it was almost game time! We checked into the Residence Inn Marriott in Sandy, Utah and started freshening up. I called down to the front desk to let them know that we would be ready for the shuttle to the stadium at 7:15. The hotel van dropped us off at Rio Tinto Stadium, which was only one mile away from where we were staying.

When we got to the stadium, we felt intimidated walking on grounds that were definitely not enemy territory. I felt like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz ('Toto I don’t think we are in Kansas anymore!').

Even though a lot of people stared at us wearing our Rapids jerseys, we just smiled with pride!

Just after that, we noticed there were a number of people getting off a bus wearing familiar colors.....The drum noise coming from the busload of people was also familiar and caught our attention. As it turns out they were the travelling RAPIDS SUPPORTERS! We introduced ourselves and took lots of pictures with our new friends.

Entering Rio Tinto Stadium I could smell sweet caramelized almonds and buttery popcorn.....junk food lovers’ Heaven! The fans were excited and as more people shoved their way through the gates the louder the voices and cheers became.

The stadium was OK-looking I guess, but I love our own Dick’s Sporting Goods Park way more! It was a completely different atmosphere though inside: there was way too much red, yellow and Real Salt Lake blue for my liking! I encourage more Rapids fans to attend more away games to get more burgundy and Rapids blue in there!

I’m a huge fan of American Idol, and for anyone who didn’t know this already, David Archuleta performed after the game and the concert was unbelievable!

Heading back home the next day, honestly though, I would have to say the highlight of the whole trip (other than having awesome bonding time with the girls) was watching Omar Cummings score the goal for the Rapids in the 88th minute! It was great to see the Salt Lake fans get quiet after that! Check the Rapids' website to watch Omar’s goal of the week...it was awesome!

All in all it was a great trip, it was great to see the Rapids get a point on the road, and I can't wait for future road trips!

Thanks for letting me share my road trip diary!"

-Lindsay
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Thursday, June 11, 2009

DSG Park Center Stage for Xportiva


Dick’s Sporting Goods Park will host the only event in 2009 featuring all of Denver’s professional sports teams in one location.

It's "Xportiva 2009", a one-of-a-kind interactive family sports experience, on Sunday, June 28th from 10 am – 5 pm.

Xportiva Sports Expo 2009 is a free, interactive event designed to further familiarize Denver’s Hispanic community with our local professional teams, focused to increase fan support and loyalty within the Spanish-speaking community.

The Rapids, Denver Nuggets, Colorado Avalanche, Colorado Mammoth, Colorado Rockies and Denver Broncos will all converge on Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, as each team invites attendees to experience various interactive activities, focusing on the fundamentals of each respective sport.

Food, music, all of Denver's pro sports teams, and it's all free..........stop by on Sunday, June 28!
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Casey Checks In from South Africa


Rapids striker Conor Casey took a second to update us back here in Colorado with a quick message from South Africa, where he currently is with the US Men's National Team for next week's Confederations Cup:

"Hi everyone back in Colorado!

A quick update from South Africa: we arrived Tuesday afternoon after a full day of travel.

We are all pretty exhausted we just relaxed and slept the first 24 hours that we were here.

We had a light jog yesterday afternoon, followed by some games, it was just a little something to get a good sweat and get the flight out of the system.

It's been raining pretty steadily here so far, and from the sounds of it, that's how it should be the next few days.

Talk to you guys later,"

-Conor

Look for more updates from Casey from South Africa in the coming days!
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STHerald

Hey Rapids Season Ticket Holders!

What is the STHerald, you ask? Well it's our recently branded monthly Season Ticket Holder e-newsletter. Be sure to check your emails today as you should be receiving your monthly update from your Service Specialists.

These monthly e-newsletters include things like special offers, inside news, and fun team facts just for you - our most valued customers! Another added benefit of being a Colorado Rapids Season Ticket Holder.

Look for the next one to hit your email inbox TODAY! Any questions give us a call on the Customer Service Hotline at 303-727-3414.

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Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Confederations Cup Viewing Parties

Looking for a place to cheer on the US Men’s National Team for the upcoming FIFA 2009 Confederations Cup?

Come watch the Rapids’ own Conor Casey and the rest of the USMNT as they travel to South Africa for the 2009 Confederations Cup.

Several of the Rapids’ partner bars and restaurants will be hosting viewing parties for the matches; take off for lunch (or breakfast!) to come watch the games live with other dedicated fans!

Confederations Cup Viewing Party Schedule:
June 15th at 12:25 P.M. – USA vs. Italy – Sobo 151
June 18th at 7:55 A.M. – USA vs. Brazil – The British Bulldog
June 21st at 12:25 P.M. – USA vs. Egypt – GB Fish and Chips

Haven't been to a viewing party yet? What you can expect:
-a great atmosphere to watch the game with other fans
-drink specials for fans in US colors
-door prizes
-the chance to help support the bars and restaurants who support soccer in Colorado!

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Monday, June 8, 2009

Cummings Up for Goal of the Week


Rapids striker Omar Cummings is up for voting for MLS Goal of the Week for his terrific 88th minute blast against RSL on Saturday.

"I just looked to get some space, and once I looked up I just wanted to turn and shoot. That was the only thing in my mind," Cummings told MLSNet.com.

Take a moment to vote for him to win by clicking here.

Omar has a shot at becoming the first Rapids player to win the award this year; he's currently in the lead with 33% of fan votes.

2009 MLS Goal of the Week winners to date:
Week 11: Nate Jaqua, SEA
Week 10: Claudio Lopez, KC
Week 9: Santino Quaranta, DC
Week 8: Chris Pontius, DC
Week 7: Jaime Moreno, DC
Week 6: Clint Mathis, RSL
Week 5: Brian Ching, HOU
Week 4: Brian McBride, CHI
Week 3: Sanna Nyassi, NE
Week 2: Fredy Montero, SEA
Week 1: Fredy Montero, SEA
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Friday, June 5, 2009

Full Schedule of Live Bands for Rapids 4thFest Released


The Rapids have released the complete live acts schedule for bands performing at the club's annual 4thFest celebrations on Sat. July 4, both before and following the club's match vs. Chicago.

The Rapids will be providing live bands on a stage outside the south end of the stadium as part of the pregame festival, as well as a special post-game performance inside the stadium!

Performing outside the stadium in the pregame festival are:

NINA STOREY
Nina has worked with and opened for acclaimed artists such as Etta James, Sarah Bareillis, Johnny Lang, Sarah McLachlan, Patty Griffin, Joan Osborne, The Allman Brothers, INXS, Linda Rondstadt, Susan Tedeschi, Les Nubians, Jackie Greene, Rocco Deluca and The Subdudes. Nina’s new Album, "So Many Ways from:me to: you" is as she describes it, “21st Century Soul” - mashing old-school soul with an indie singer/songwriter edge.

QUEEN CITY JAZZ BAND
For 50 years the Queen City Jazz Band has kept its focus on performing the great sounds of New Orleans-style Dixieland Jazz. The Queen City Jazz Band has become a Colorado musical institution and has been honored by the State Legislature, two governors, two mayors, and the Denver City Council for its cultural contributions.

THAT EIGHTIES BAND
One of the hottest and most unique 80's tribute bands in America. Consisting of some of Colorado's most well known musicians, they will dazzle you with their powerful sound and stage show. That Eighties Band plays all the great music that the decade has to offer. The end result is a show that any eighties fan is sure to love.

After the game, scheduled to appear on a specially-constructed stage inside the stadium, will be a special performance by one of Colorado's favorite hometown bands, "The Samples"!

THE SAMPLES
were a band formed in Boulder, Colorado in early 1987. Their music has been described as "reggae influenced rock/pop" and a cross between The Police and the Grateful Dead.The founding members were Sean Kelly (Guitar/Vocals), Andy Sheldon (Bass/Vocals), Charles Hambleton (guitar), Jeep MacNichol (Drums/Vocals), and Al Laughlin (Keyboards, Vocals). Their live shows helped them on the college circuit selling out venues in college towns across the country. Their records blended pop sensibility with a mix of folk, reggae, jazz, and rock to create their own signature sound. Sean Kelly, the featured songwriter, wrote songs about nature and the environment giving the band an "eco-friendly" reputation. The band headlined some of the H.O.R.D.E. tour shows in 1993 and 1996 and they shared the bill with big names such as The Allman Brothers Band, Blues Traveler, and Phish. On their own tours, many up and coming bands opened up for them including Dave Matthews Band, Hootie & the Blowfish, and Lisa Loeb. The success included television performances on The Tonight Show and House of Blues.

The band last played together on New Year's Eve 2007, but the Rapids are bringing back The Samples for this groundbreaking reunion performance! Be there to experience the concert following the Rapids game and before the fireworks begin on the North side of the field at 9:00pm!

For more info on all of the club's entertainment planned for July 4, visit www.4thFestColorado.com.
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Thursday, June 4, 2009

O’Brien Goes on Loan to Austin Aztex for Remainder of the Season

The Colorado Rapids have sent midfielder Ciaran O’Brien on loan for the remainder of the 2009 MLS season, the club announced.

O’Brien joins the USL First Division side Austin Aztex, where he will be available for their game tomorrow night against the Charleston Battery.

“I think this is a wonderful opportunity for him to get games, to further his development and really to play in what is most important- in front of a crowd and for points,” said head coach Gary Smith.

“I know it has been difficult and frustrating for him not playing football, but this is a nice opportunity to go to a club that I believe are newly formed. Adrian Heath (Austin head coach) is a very, very experienced individual in the English game and I am sure he will offer up his experience and guidance as Ciaran moves on.”

This will be the second loan stint for O’Brien in the last two years following his loan period with the then USL Seattle Sounders from July 28 through September 5 of last year.

The former fifth overall pick by Colorado in the 2008 MLS SuperDraft has appeared in one match for the Rapids and offered this about his first day of training with Austin.

“It was fantastic actually. It’s definitely a change. It’s good to be involved and be able to play. It’s harder in MLS now. There’s no reserve league. It’s a little bit tougher for guys who aren’t playing to get games.”
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Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Casey Comments on POTW & POTM


Striker Conor Casey's comments on finding out he earned Player of the Week and Player of the Month honors in MLS this week:

"I'm pleased with being named both Player of the Week and Player of the Month.

"The team came out and really tried to impose ourselves on New York on Saturday. For me, it was great to get that kind of service in the box.

"I think we've really tried to play good soccer the last couple of weeks, and the guys have shown that we can. And above all, three points always feels good."
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Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Kosuke Fights to the Death to Ensure Victory

video

In case you missed it on the RapidsVision at the last home game on May 23, Rapids defender Kosuke Kimura took time out to record a special message in Japanese to fans welcoming them to the night's Rapids Asian-Pacific Heritage Night celebrations.
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