Reason #1436 why I love living in Orlando: Creative City Project, which returns to bring downtown Orlando alive with free art and music Saturday, October 17.
For one night, Orange Ave will be filled with art being brought to life before your very eyes and ears. There will be marching bands and orchestras. There will be aerial acrobatics and dancing. There will be visual artists creating as you watch.
On Friday, May 29, Orlando City Soccer Club (OCSC) and Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer announced OCSC will privately fund the entire downtown stadium construction, allowing the project to move forward immediately with an expected completion date of summer 2016.
The City of Orlando has agreed to sell the property in Parramore designated as the site for the downtown soccer stadium to OCSC, and the Club has agreed to develop the stadium. Orlando City SC will become the sole owners and operators of the venue.
Yesterday, March 8, Orlando City Soccer Club played their first season opener as a MLS (Major League Soccer) team against New York City FC (NYCFC) at the Citrus Bowl in front of a record crowd.
A sellout crowd of 62,510 fans filled the stadium, the largest attendance ever for a soccer game at the Citrus Bowl. The audience is also the second highest for an inaugural MLS match.
A big congratulations to Orlando City Soccer Club for fulfilling their goal to #fillthestadium, and sell out the Citrus Bowl for their first season home opener as a MLS team! As of this post, all seats have been filled. They even sold out 2,000 Standing Room Only tickets in less than 24 hours.
For the past few days, it seemed that the opener might be in jeopardy with a possible MLS strike, but an agreement has been reached, and the game will go on as planned on March 8. In a statement to the press, Orlando City Soccer Club Founder and President Phil Rawlins said:
Thursday afternoon, October 16, an official groundbreaking ceremony was held for Orlando City Soccer Club‘s new downtown stadium.
Thousands of fans attended, and joined together in a march from Church Street Station to the new stadium location further west on Church Street. It was quite a sight with everyone wearing purple and waving flags.
Orlando City’s primary color, purple, was prominent throughout the event, as a ceremonial dig took place featuring purple shovels and 24 tons of purple sand. In addition, fans were able to participate in the groundbreaking after the formal dig, receiving a commemorative jar containing a sample of the sand.
At a party on Church Street downtown, MLS Commissioner Don Garber and expansion team owners Flávio Augusto da Silva and Phil Rawlins announced last night that Orlando will join the league in 2015.
Orlando City Soccer Club will become Major League Soccer’s 21st club during the league’s 20th season.
Orlando City’s inaugural season will see the club open its own soccer stadium in downtown Orlando. Construction on the stadium will begin Spring 2014, and will be located just west of the Amway Center.
Prior to moving into the new stadium in the summer of 2015, Orlando City will play matches at the Florida Citrus Bowl Stadium.
Individuals who purchase 2014 Orlando City season tickets will have top priority for the club’s 2015 MLS season seat selection. Call (855) ORL-CITY or visit orlandocitysoccer.com for details.
Details regarding conference alignment and schedule format for future MLS seasons will be unveiled at a later date.
The Orange County Board of County Commissioners met on Tuesday, October 22, and approved a plan that will provide funding for a new soccer stadium to be built in downtown Orlando.
The vote was 5-2 to approve a plan to use tourist tax dollars to help fund the stadium as part of a larger venues package, which includes the second phase of the Dr. Phillips Performing Arts Center, and renovations to the Citrus Bowl.
This clears the way to for the Orlando City Soccer Club ( aka Orlando Lions) to become a Major League Soccer team, pending negotiations between the team and the MLS.
“We are ecstatic about the positive vote,” said Orlando City President Phil Rawlins. “Our fans have been the driving force behind the effort to bring MLS to Orlando. This one is for them.”
A franchise could be awarded as early as November. The Lions would then begin play in MLS in Spring 2015. The stadium will be located at the northeast corner where Church St. and Parramore Ave intersect.
Here is a video of the vote as it happened:
On October 7, the Orlando City Council voted to approve the funding needed for a downtown soccer stadium, with a vote of 7-0.
This not only paves the way for the new stadium, but could also help score Orlando City Soccer Club a Major League Soccer franchise.
Next, it’s the county commissioners who will vote on it, and if everything passes, talks with MLS will begin. This means a deal for a franchise could be in place before the end of the year.
The vote also approves $25 million in additional tourist tax dollars to go to the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts, for completion of phase two of that project, and another $12 million to the Citrus Bowl renovation.