Friday, September 23rd, 2011 may have passed inconspicuously into the history books as Aurelien Collin bobblehead night for most people, but not for two LIVESTRONG employees. Colleen Legge and I attended LIVESTRONG community night at LIVESTRONG Sporting Park as Sporting Kansas City played host to the Philadelphia Union. Below are my impressions of the stadium, LIVESTRONG‘s partnership with Sporting Club and being a cancer survivor in 2011.
The most technologically advanced soccer-specific stadium in the world isn’t in Barcelona, Madrid, Manchester or London. It’s practically smack dab in the middle of the U.S. The 18,000 capacity LIVESTRONG Sporting Park is a testament to what grand vision can become when executed correctly. Remember when fans were displeased about the new Yankees stadium having seats with obstructed views despite opening in 2009? That’s not happening any time soon in Kansas City. There are no bad seats. Period. No seat is too far from the field, and you’re always close to an HD monitor with the live feed and replays. Even the field lights were designed with HD in mind.
As a project manager in our marketing department, I can certainly appreciate an eye for detail and the LIVESTRONG brand is ubiquitous within the park. From greeters in yellow polos to the LIVESTRONG marquee that I’m convinced you can see from space, the branding touches are numerous and varied. Even with everything LIVESTRONG and Sporting Club have discussed and executed to date, my mind is still reeling from the possible expression of our brand. I can honestly say I’m really looking forward to helping it grow in the future.
It’s a fine line between pumping fans up for a game and reminding them why LIVESTRONG is on the marquee. You don’t want to introduce your starting lineup to hype music and then hit fans over the head with “Cancer is the world’s leading cause of death.” What a buzz kill. That said, the staff at LIVESTRONG Sporting Park do a wonderful job walking that line. After all, LIVESTRONG was founded on the idea that facing cancer is difficult, but life’s adversities are meant to be faced together. Our services may kick in the moment you’re diagnosed, but we’re always by your side–encouraging you to live a smarter, healthier life on your own terms. Life may be hard, but we’re about the hard stuff.
As much as I love soccer, last Friday night wasn’t about soccer. It was about a yellow seat being a place of honor in the owners’ box. It was about 18,000 people cheering as a 5-year cancer survivor belted out God Bless America. It was about strangers sharing their personal stories. It was about taking what little time we have and trying to leave the world a better place than we found it. After all, we believe in life. Your life.
Watch the video below of LIVESTRONG Staffer Colleen Legge singing “God Bless America”.