Rapids Week begins with Operation 5280

March on 16th Street Mall kicks off countdown to First Kick

COMMERCE CITY, Colo. (Friday, March 2, 2012) – The Colorado Rapids announced details of “Rapids Week 2012” this afternoon, the annual series of events leading up to the team’s First Kick and celebrating the club’s 17th season in Major League Soccer. Today’s “Operation 5280” is the first event leading up to the Rapids opening match on Saturday, March 10 at 4:00 p.m. against the Columbus Crew at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.

TICKETS STILL AVAILABLE

“Rapids Week 2012” will include participation by people throughout the Rapids organization, including players, coaches, staff and mascots, as well as the club’s passionate supporters.

RAPIDS WEEK 2012 SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

Friday, March 2

Operation 5280 (3:00 p.m.) 

PHOTO GALLERY

Rapids Week 2012 kicks off with a march through Downtown Denver, as Rapids staff and supporters will join to celebrate the club, canvas the 16th Street Mall, and hand out giveaways and prizes to fans along the way. The march will start at the Colorado State Capitol building at 3:00 p.m., and the group will follow the 16th Street Mall, ending at Union Station. All are invited to participate!

Saturday, March 3

Rapids vs. Colorado School of Mines (3:00 p.m.)

The Rapids will have a final preseason scrimmage as a tune-up before the March 10 First Kick against the Columbus Crew, taking on the Colorado School of Mines. The Rapids have played a number of scrimmages throughout preseason against colleges, MLS clubs, and international competition, and will use the match to continue preparation for the 2012 MLS regular season.

Class VI Kickoff Party (7:00 p.m.)

The Rapids oldest Supporters’ Group, Class VI, will hold their kickoff party with several members of the technical staff, including Head Coach Oscar Pareja, in attendance to answer questions and interact with fans. The event will take place at the Celtic Tavern at 1801 Blake Street, and is open to Class VI members as well as all other Rapids supporters and fans.

Colorado Avalanche vs. Pittsburgh Penguins (7:00 p.m.)

A pair of Rapids veterans and hockey fans in Drew Moor and Matt Pickens will attend the Avalanche game against the star-studded Pittsburgh Penguins. The players will be featured on the big screen in between periods, with special Rapids giveaways also going to lucky fans throughout the game.

Sunday, March 4

Colorado Rapids Season Preview Show on Altitude (6:00 p.m.)

Altitude is returning for another season broadcasting Rapids games in HD, and their season preview show will air throughout the week leading up to the game, including Sunday evening. Get all the information on the team with play-by-play man Todd Romero and color commentator Marcelo Balboa. Visit www.altitude.tv for more information on Rapids telecasts.

Monday, March 5

Denver Nuggets vs. Sacramento Kings (7:00 p.m.)

Many Rapids players will be heading to the Pepsi Center on Monday night for the Nuggets vs. Kings game on Monday night, and the players will be featured on the court during halftime, and will also provide giveaways for lucky fans at the game. The Rapids will also be highlighted on the Altitude broadcast of the game.

Wednesday, March 7

Second Annual Kickoff Luncheon (11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.)

The entire Colorado Rapids team, including players and coaches, will be at the Denver Marriott City Center for the club’s second annual Kickoff Luncheon. The event is an opportunity for fans and partners to meet the Rapids team ahead of the season, and limited spots are still available by contacting Rapids Senior Manager of Community Relations Marisa Colaiano (mcolaiano@dsgpark.com, 303-727-3517). In addition to purchasing a table for lunch, attendees will also have the chance to purchase other items, with all proceeds from the event going to Kroenke Sports Charities.

Thursday, March 8

Boy Scouts of America Sports Breakfast (7:00 a.m.)

Rapids midfielder and the team’s 2011 Humanitarian of the Year Wells Thompson will attend the Boy Scouts of America’s 36th Annual Sports Breakfast, being held at the Pepsi Center. People attending the event will get the chance to meet with Thompson, and speak with him about his charity work and more.  Information on the event can be found by clicking here.

HealthONE Visit to Rocky Mountain Hospital for Children

A total of five Rapids players, as well as a team mascot, will visit the Rocky Mountain Hospital for Children on Thursday afternoon to tour the facility meeting patients and families, and giving away prizes. The event is part of the club’s partnership with HealthONE.

Friday, March 9

Pub Crawl in LoDo (6:00 – 9:00 p.m.)

Just one day before the Rapids match against the Crew, the club will participate in a Pub Crawl in LoDo sponsored by Heineken. Some Rapids players (who are injured and unable to play in Saturday’s game) may participate in the event, which will include the chance for fans to win prizes including a Rapids suite at a future game and a Heineken Beertender. 

Saturday, March 10

American Diabetes Association Expo (9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.)

The Rapids Street Team will join the American Diabetes Association Expo to interact with attendees at the event, giving away Rapids prizes and supporting the relationship between the two organizations. The Rapids and the ADA promote healthy, active lifestyles; for more information, please visit www.diabetes.org.

Colorado Rapids vs. Columbus Crew (4:00 p.m.)

In a matchup between clubs that have met in the playoffs in two consecutive seasons, the Colorado Rapids will kick off the 2012 season at home against the Columbus Crew at 4:00 p.m. The Rapids will make their debut under new Head Coach Oscar Pareja, and will look to start off the season in style.