Smarties, I realize the Charlotte FC season – our second with a Major League Soccer team in Charlotte – is just getting going. And as parents, we haven’t even gotten organized yet for spring break, Easter and all the rest, much less figured out when we will have time to take our kids to see the “big boys” play soccer. But I’m waving my arms in front of your face to let you know that Saturday’s game at Bank of America Stadium, which starts at noon, is the only time ALL season that Charlotte FC will play a day game. Because of the new broadcast contract with Apple TV the remaining home games will start at 7:30, and while that’s a good option for older kids, it’s not for so many of us with young children with early bedtimes.
SO, if you’re looking for something to get excited about this weekend, and have some flexibility because Little League Baseball or other spring activities haven’t started yet, you can click here for tickets. Charlotte FC is playing its rival Atlanta United and is still looking for its first win, so the scene is set for an exciting game. As a bonus, Saturday is the only day this weekend without rain in the forecast!
Some other festivities to look for at Bank of America Stadium: The supporters groups – all the organized fan groups – host a tailgate at 624 McNinch Street which is actually really kid-friendly. It starts at There are bounce houses and games, food and fun for adults too. And as a huge bonus, Knowledge Perk Coffee will have a coffee truck parked in the tailgate lot starting at 7:30 a.m. (The gravel lot is for tailgating only but you can park in adjacent lots.
For mom and dad, there will be green beer in honor of St. Patrick’s Day at the bar behind the East Goal (near the supporters’ general admission section) while supplies last. The first 10,000 fans through the gates will receive a free Charlotte FC hat (looks like a baseball cap.)
That’s about it! It’s simple and easy fun. The game lasts two hours, and the action is non-stop (not including the 15 minute break for halftime.) So it’s great for young attention spans and encouragement for so many kids who play soccer themselves but have yet to see how the professionals do it. I stuck binoculars and “bottomless” bowls of popcorn in front of my 5-year-old twin boys last year – and let them get their faces painted – and they were happy for the whole game.
Another great option for families is the new MLS Next Pro team Charlotte FC is fielding this year. It’s the equivalent of a “minor league team” with younger players that could eventually be promoted to Charlotte FC. Crown Legacy FC is the name of the team. They will play their home games at Matthews Sportsplex and usually on Sunday afternoons at 3 p.m. Tickets are just $15 per person. The home opener will be Sunday, March 26 at 3 p.m. against Huntsville City. For tickets and more information, click here.