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Sports Culture in PDX


“It felt like that atmosphere we had at the World Cup and at the Olympics. It was an unbelievable atmosphere.”

-Cindy Parlow Cone, Coach

“Portland’s soccer fans — Timbers and now Thorns — are emphatic, passionate, joyful, motivated, supportive, and educated. A huge bouncing, flag waving, chanting pack of allies.” -Sunday White, Rose City Riveter

The Portland Thorns FC began playing in Portland after the NWSL formed in 2012, following the collapse of the WPS. The Thorns fit into the Portland sports culture due to their direct connection to the existing soccer community and support of the LBGTQ community. The Rose City is no stranger to soccer, with having the Timbers being an integral part of sports in the city, so adding a high profile womens team only helped to fuel the passion and push the sport. In their inaugural season, the Thorns won the first ever National Women’s Soccer League Championship. The Thorns are able to fill seats due to popular players that were drawn to Portland due to the unique culture that is offered and their connection to Portland in many ways.

“This city gets that type of crowd.”

Portland Thunder Research Project  

This piece shows in-depth research and a strategic direction for a new arena football team.

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