The day before the Galaxy tamely tied Chivas, I was downtown to check out the launch of L.A. Liga 14, a longtime project of Power 106 radio personality Mando Fresko.
From his Facebook page,
For years, I've wanted to bring my love of music and soccer together. Introducing... L.A. Liga. A movement in Los Angeles that celebrates the beautiful game and its lifestyle. Come out to the #LALiga14 opening day this Saturday from 12-3pm. Live DJs, 4v4 open play, drinks and food. Proud to partner up with Pepsi, Bumpy Pitch, Gol Beverage Co. and The Great Company on this project.
The launch took place around the arts district, tucked in a graffiti decorated alleyway behind The Great Company, a creative space for musical artists, photo shoots, and today, a pickup soccer court.
(Photography by Golazo Sports Magazine)
It was street soccer in the purest sense. The play was clean, but you had a narrow path, uneven concrete and other things to worry about. It was fun playing like a kid again, when you needed to remember the little things like how a ball reacts differently to a brick wall and a chain link fence.
Mando Fresko coordinated the event with his trusty mic, acting as a referee and time keeper. Crowds of onlookers huddled around the goals. Power 106 was on hand providing music, and a taco truck was serving yummy smelling food.
It was a righteous get together. I had an amazing time, getting a few games in and talking Galaxy and the World Cup with fellow soccer fans. You can't go wrong with good soccer, good music, good food and good people. And there's just something about catchy music that makes you want to dance with the ball for hours. Job well done to everyone who collaborated on the project. (Special thanks to the Gol Beverage Co. promoters for keeping me hydrated!)
I also got to meet Ben from Bumpy Pitch, the soccer lifestyle brand recently mentioned in GQ. Ben was kind enough to drop off a few shirts. (Review coming soon)
There was plenty of fun to go around, and everyone in attendance was having a great time. By the time 3 p.m. arrived, I was tired but in no hurry to leave, and neither was anyone else.
I spoke to Mando before taking off, who impressed me during his brief moments on the ball. He was genuinely happy with how everything went, and actually wants to plan another event next month. My only worry is that this gets too big!