Apr 112015

It’s here. It’s finally here. It’s game day.

As per the Thorns game alert email, gates tonight are at 6 p.m. with kick at 7:07. Fanladen (1633 SW Alder) will open at 4:30 p.m. for ticket exchange, merch sales, 107ist membership sign-ups and renewals, and general merriment.

If you have spare tickets you’re not using, you can donate them to the Riveters by transferring them to If you’re looking for a ticket, we’ll sell you one of those donated ones at face value and that money will go toward tifo and community projects. Last year, some of the proceeds of ticket sales went to the Jefferson Field project.

We’ve got a new shirt going on sale today. It’s a super-limited run. I sincerely mean it when I say “super-limited.” If you want one, you’ll need to come to Fanladen and you’ll need to do it early.

In stadium, we’ll again try to concentrate on getting all our most vocal Thorns supporters into sections 106, 107, and 108. Concentrated effort = greater volume = greater impact on the atmosphere. Learn the chants. Sing the chants. Support our Thorns. And please, especially today, be ready to go before the anthem. We need you all there. The Thorns need you all there.


Other stuff:

April 18: Following the match, the Portland chapter of American Outlaws is hosting an event previewing the Womens World Cup and featuring Thorns Alex Morgan, Tobin Heath, Rachel Van Holleke and Allie Long. Tickets are available through their Facebook page or at the AOPDX online store.  You don’t need to be a member to purchase tickets and proceeds benefit FC West. Let’s send them to nationals!. Go, go, go!

April 30: The 107ist is hosting the US premiere of “Jack to a King” at Cinema 21 with proceeds going to the Cinema 21 refurbishment and to the Jefferson Field resurfacing project. Tickets are available here.


And don’t forget the Oregon Humane Society’s #BiscuitChallenge. We’ve already seen a few Riveters post their videos. Will you be next?

Almost there….

 Posted by on March 21, 2015  Uncategorized  No Responses »
Mar 212015

With just weeks left before NWSL’s third season begins, players are arriving and plans are being set in motion. Today, we gather at Merlo Field to see our Thorns take on the University of Portland Pilots.

There’s history here. It was home to Portland’s patron saint of soccer, Clive Charles. It’s been the starting point for so many epic soccer careers. It was here that Tiffeny Milbrett scored her 100th international goal.

This field has played host to thousands of players from around the world and will host thousands more in years to come.

Those who know me know I’m a sappy, sentimental sort, but I’m going to say this anyway: if you’re on the fence about going today, get off the fence and go. And, when you get there, pause for a moment. Think about why you’re there. Is it purely for the sport? Is it for the fellowship of other soccer fans and supporters? Is it in support of the dreams of so many kids coming up through the system, that they may someday play on this field, wear these badges, live their dreams? There’s no wrong answer.


If you go, go early. Take public transit if you can as parking is limited.

We posted yesterday on the FB and Twitter that we’d be in sections H and I. The Pilots student sections are traditionally J, K and L. But, because this all feels so last-minute, it’s likely that we’ll have folks all over the stadium. We don’t have capos and drums lined up for this one so if you want a chant to get going, you’re going to have to do it yourselves. This is preseason, after all, and we’re just getting our voices back after the long offseason.

See you all on the bluff in a few hours.


Feb 052015

The long, dark offseason is nearly over. The schedule is out. Rumors of player departures and acquisitions are popping up in the strangest places. It’s time.

Let’s do this.


One more call for volunteers:

We’re looking for folks to join the travel, tifo, merch and membership committees. Grab an oar, folks, the boat is about to push back from the dock. Click here for links to the Google doc sign-up pages and more info about what it is we’re looking for. Don’t hesitate, the sign-up pages will close February 7. (But you can still email us at if you want to volunteer later.)


And a preseason gathering:

Does it feel like forever since you’ve seen your fellow Thorns friends? Or, in social media cases, made or gained new followers and friends, but have never met them in person? It is time for our first Riveters meet-and-tweet. On February 21st, after you spend the morning planting trees, come out to Bazi from 4 p.m. – 7 p.m.. We will be reminiscing about seasons past and watching the 2013 NWSL championship game, as well as discussing the upcoming season. There will be merch for sale, food and beer to consume, and new and old friends to hang out with.

(Heads up, a sing-along version of Purple Rain will follow our gathering, but is a separate event. If you want to stay for His Royal Purpleness, you’ll need to make a separate reservation through the Bazi website (

(That was a lot of parentheses. Sorry.)

And some other stuff:

We’re working on info for away travel, not just for Seattle, but for each of the other eight NWSL cities. We’ll shout when that info is ready to release, so hold off on buying game tickets just now.

As far as Portland-based away day viewings, we’ll be looking for places you guys would like to gather to watch together. Bazi Bierbrasserie has been fantastic and will show most, if not all, away matches, but we’re looking to expand our reach. Do you know of a place in your neighborhood that might be willing to screen matches for us? Without knowing the television schedule, venues will need to be capable of streaming (ideally with sound), must be accessible and, ideally, should be all-ages. Extra points awarded for venues on MAX or bus lines for our mass-transity friends.

We’ll be doing some work on the website over the next few weeks to make it more functional. If you’ve got ideas or suggestions about what works and doesn’t work, please pass them along. Again,


I think that’s it for now. Go on about your business.

New year, new hat!

 Posted by on December 21, 2014  Merchandise  No Responses »
Dec 212014

The wheels are starting to turn for the 2015 NWSL season and we’re gearing up with new, well, gear.


It’s red! It’s black! It’s got Polka dots! AND IT’S REVERSIBLE! These festive beanies are up for presale (we expect them to be deliverable in late-January – just in time for Valentine’s Day!). Why not order now and avoid the rush?

As an added incentive, you can get free shipping for these babies (and on all orders over $30) by entering the code GIRLSINRED. Make sure you click the “shipping rate” button after entering the code to confirm the free shipping.

So, head on over to and order a bajillion of them. Preseason is always so cold.

Aug 232014

A 2-0 loss to FC Kansas City today ended the Thorns season on the road.

This season was a wild ride with ups and downs and twists and turns and, at this point, there’s not much to do but be thankful we have a team that plays in a beautiful stadium, in a gorgeous city, and gives their all for the badge they wear.

Well, there is one more thing.

There’s a long tradition of welcoming home the winners, those who’ve bested their opponents and lifted a trophy. Sadly, the Thorns fell short in their game today. But, being who we are and supporting as we do, we want more than anything to lift them up once more as the season closes.

So, we’re going to the airport again. We don’t expect the response we had last year when quite literally hundreds of folks turned out to greet our championship team. We’re going anyway.

There are two flights coming in, the first at 9:25 a.m., the second at 10:30 a.m. tomorrow morning. For those of you attending the Timbers Cascadia match at 2 p.m., that second flight might be cutting it close for a noon gate time.

If you can make it to greet either or both flights, come on out. I’ll be the one wearing the scarf and waving a cell phone around. I’ll post on the Twitter account (@pdxriveterssg) where to find me tomorrow when I get on site.

As was the case last year, please be aware that not everyone in the airport is there to see the Thorns and act accordingly. Some of these poor folks just want to get home and will be ill-prepared for the likes of us. Apologies in advance for barking at you to clear a path should that be necessary.

I’ll see you lot in the morning.


Aug 142014

The principles that constitute the annual donation drive known as By Your Capo A Pint aren’t exclusive to any one group like the Timbers Army, but they and the 107ist have championed this initiative for the past five seasons with aplomb. So it’s probably safe to presume that you’ve read about its origins involving Tim Burr, a Stuttgart jersey, capos, values, charities, kids, etc.

That also means that you can probably figure out what the Rose City Riveters plan to do in about two weeks’ time on August 17th, yes?

We: The 107ist, Rose City Riveters, Portland, Cascadia, humanity and so on, seek to create a realizable philosophy that actualizes our beliefs into actions.

We, as capos, help people to find their voice during match day.

Buy Your Capo A Pint is a chance for the people in our sections to say, “Thank you” to the conductors of the NWSL’s most insatiable supporters by requesting one more thing of you: Whatever you would consider to be the value of a complimentary beverage for a hard-working capo, instead of buying that beverage put that money into our pickle buckets and we will turn it into tuition for young girls to attend Portland’s own Rock ‘n’ Roll Camp for Girls.

The choice to benefit this magnificent group speaks volumes that are arguably equal to those that the RCR doles out on match days for the Thorns.

“Creative voices of girls and women need to be amplified to create social change. Girls need positive role models and support for their creative endeavors. We can build a community where girls support each other rather than tear each other down. We can empower girls to recognize, understand and respond to discrimination. ‘Girls Rock’ is more than just a slogan.”

August 17th is the last match of the regular season for the Thorns.

August 17th we host our rivals from the north before the post-season begins.

August 17th will require your heart, you extra vocal chords, your passion and your rhythm.

August 17th presents to you the opportunity to help many young girls a chance to become confidant, empowered women who rock.

See you in the stands.

Hey! Ho! Go Thorns!


– The Rose City Riveters Capos, Drums and Trumpets



Jul 062014

As a few of you may know, we had a few complaints following the Seattle home match a while back. Folks didn’t like that people were swearing. Or booing a Seahawk. Or that they didn’t bow down in reverence of a USWNT player on the opposing team.

Whatever. Everyone has an opinion. Everyone supports in different ways. What matters deep down is that they’re supporting. Complaints are going to come, especially after a contentious match against our closest rival.

So, it came as a bit of a surprise to me to get a complaint email in the middle of yesterday’s match. I wasn’t in the North End yesterday, I was up in my perch in what Heidi calls my “lofty eyrie” that the rest of us call the press box. From up there, I can hear chants pretty clearly. Yesterday, I didn’t hear anything unusual.

But still, the complaint came.

Hello. I am a person who loves the Thorns, my whole family does. We have season tickets, however it is very troubling to us that the Riveter chants that used to be so supportive to our Thorns are now used for making our city look like a bunch of assholes. The game against Seattle fans had disgraceful behavior and today’s game too with chants of lousy keeper? Our team is a good one and we should instead continue to support them as best we can instead of wasting effort abusing the other team. It makes the Thorns, their supporters and the city of Portland look bad. I hope it gets resolved soon.


My immediate reaction to this was, very simply, snotty dismissiveness. I read it on my phone on the elevator down to the post-match presser, and again before the coach and players came in to answer questions, and once more when we found out Karina LeBlanc, last year’s Riveters player of the year and current Chicago Red Stars keeper, would be in to give us a few quotes, too.

One only need be within thirty yards of me when the Timbers play the Galaxy to know of my *ahem* dislike of Robbie Keane. But I don’t think we were anywhere near that with Karina. Karina will always be one of us.

But Karina also gets it. She knows what being a player on an opposing team coming into Providence Park entails. Moreso, she knows what being an opposing keeper coming into Providence Park means.

It means you stand with your back to the loudest, most boisterous group of supporters anywhere in women’s sports for at least 45 minutes. It means you are greeted with the “Dodgy Keeper” chant as all opposing keepers are, regardless of skill or how much we may love them as players or individuals. It’s just part of the game.

So, it should be no surprise that she was asked about it in the post-match presser. And her response should be no surprise, either.

Portland is just a city that I remember being here just playing for the people. They’re great, they’re energetic, they love the game. It was just so nice. I just embraced it and just said this is such a good opportunity to play in front of amazing fans. I didn’t take it as them cheering against me or anything…

They’re fans, they have to cheer for the home team. I didn’t take it personally. Again, when I walked out there, they were on their feet clapping for me. It’s a special feeling. Portland will always have a special feeling in my heart…

When the whistle blows, you just want to play the best soccer and give the best expression of yourself on the field. It’s always special playing here.

As previously stated, KK will always be one of us. She gets us. She played her heart out for us. She may play somewhere else, but she will always be loved in Portland.

And, until such time as she finds herself again wearing a Thorns badge, she will be greeted with “Dodgy Keeper.” And she will laugh and wave and take it as part of the game.


Jul 012014

It seems the world is colored red, white, and blue this week.


The USMNT made a valiant effort in the knock-out round of the World Cup and Independence Day happens to fall on the same day as our next Thorns home match. And for many of us, it’s a three day weekend. And Tobin Heath is finally here. And Paul Riley says Mana Shim is healthy and will be ready to play by Friday.


So, let’s celebrate ALL THE THINGS with streamers.


Get thee to the nearest Dollar Tree and buy all the red, white, and blue streamers they have. They usually run two rolls for a buck, but if you’re patient and have a little spare time (and/or an electric drill), you can re-roll those two rolls into bunches of mini-rolls to share with the people around you. If you don’t want to share your streamers, at least share this post so folks know to bring their own.


And here’s another thing: Friday, make sure you’re in the stadium early. The Thorns have been kind enough to allow us a few minutes pre-warmups for the promotion ceremony of one of our own. Jaimie Wyckoff is being promoted to the rank of First Lieutenant in the United States Air Force. The tentative time for this is 10:10, just after gates open, so hurry in.


As per usual, we’ll have Fanladen (1633 SW Alder) open pre-match for any of your merch, 107ist membership services, or ticket exchange needs. If you’ve got a spare ticket you won’t be using, you can donate it by transferring it to



Reminders and magic

 Posted by on June 25, 2014  Editorial  3 Responses »
Jun 252014

Every once in a while, I get a reminder of why we do the things we do. I got another one today.

This has been an up and down season, difficult to navigate, difficult to understand, difficult to stay up for games when the results have been so inconsistent.

For those that don’t know, I’m the one behind the Twitter account. I do my best to answer questions there and give out a bit of info here or there on where away day viewings will be or when we’ll have Fanladen open or when we need help with tifo or whatnot.

I also get to see the other side of it that a lot of you might not see. I see when people click that favorite button.

And I see when players follow the account and when they click favorite on its tweets. And sometimes it makes me cry.

One of the other things I do is write a bit about the Thorns for a soccer website. I’m not very good at it, but I keep doing it anyway in the hope that maybe someday I’ll get better at it. It allows me a little extra access on game days. I get the good stat sheets from the team and I go to the post-match presser and listen to Paul Riley and try to figure out what he’s thinking.

And when I leave the presser, because I’m lazy, I take the elevator up to the concourse to head home. Tonight, one of the Thorns, an injured player who did not play, rode up with a bunch of us.

There was a visiting journalist who’d been asking me about the game and if I enjoyed it.

“Well,” I said. “I enjoy all games in varying degrees.”

“What do you mean?” he asked as we all piled into the elevator.

“I like wins better.” The words were already out before I realized the player was there with us. I felt like an idiot. She doesn’t know me, she doesn’t know the small role I play in the Riveters.

But she smiled and said emphatically.”I do, too!”

I got off the elevator and thought about it all the way home. What a dumb thing for me to say and what a remarkable reaction she had.

For some odd reason, she follows my personal account on Twitter and I sent her a message when I got home to apologize for being snide and to reiterate that we’re not in it just for the wins, but to support the team when they most need us.

She replied almost immediately. “I do know that. Rain or shine, win or lose.”

Those words touched me. Rain or shine, win or lose. That’s the epitome of what it means to be supporters.

And, when I posted those words on the Riveters Twitter account, three of our Thorns hit favorite and I was again reminded that they play for us. All heart, all emotion, they want to win for us but they know that we will be there for them even if they don’t.

There’s some magic in that.

Apr 272014

The Thorns inaugural season was something of a fairy tale come true:  a new team in a new league spurred on by a level of support never before seen in women’s soccer.

The style of play was not great, but our Thorns pulled themselves together and, when push came to shove, won a championship and raised a trophy.

This is the dream of every young athlete, male or female.

For female athletes, it often means working part-time jobs and playing team sports as a hobby as professional opportunities in sport tend to be not in team sports, but as individuals. Golf and tennis are prime examples.

Women’s soccer has struggled. The teams play in less-than-stellar facilities to sparse (and often silent) crowds. With the exception of a few, they’re paid a pittance and many hold down second jobs when they’re not training and traveling with their teams. It isn’t easy, it isn’t pretty, but they play for the love of the game.


They found it impossible, for the Thorns held fast together.


This is where the fairy tale ending happens. This is where women’s soccer is elevated to the point where it sees support as strong as support for men’s soccer.


Last night’s tifo, a story book opening across sections of the Thorns most raucous supporters, came from the story of Little Briar-Rose.

She was her parents’ pride and joy and they invited Wise Women from throughout the kingdom to attend her birthday. Each conveyed on her magical gifts to enrich her life, save one:


When eleven of them had made their promises, suddenly the thirteenth came in. She wished to avenge herself for not having been invited, and without greeting, or even looking at anyone, she cried with a loud voice, “The King’s daughter shall in her fifteenth year prick herself with a spindle, and fall down dead.” And, without saying a word more, she turned round and left the room.

 They were all shocked, but the twelfth, whose good wish still remained unspoken, came forward, and as she could not undo the evil sentence, but only soften it, she said, “It shall not be death, but a deep sleep of a hundred years, into which the princess shall fall.”


Eleven Wise Women. And the twelfth stepped forward to save her. I could write a treatise about how supporters (I hate to make a Twelfth Man reference here, but there you go) will be the ones who will save women’s soccer, but it’s been pretty well covered over the last couple weeks.

When Briar-Rose falls into her deep sleep, her entire kingdom does as well and around her castle grows an enormous hedge of thorns to protect her as she sleeps.

In the tifo, the thorns were shown wrapped around the NWSL Championship trophy, protecting it from those who would wish to take it from us.

The league will be more difficult this year. New players, an expansion team, new coaches for a couple teams. The play will be better, the competition stronger. Holding onto that trophy for a second year will be a challenge.

But the Thorns will hold fast together.