When Reign FC announced their move from Memorial Stadium in Seattle to Cheney Stadium in Tacoma, fans expressed a mix of joy and trepidation. Joy that the club finally had a long-term home, beer, Ivar’s, and new investors joining the table. Trepidation that they might not be able to make it to as many matches, and there could be others like them — causing attendance to suffer.
As the club heads into their inaugural home match in Tacoma, all signs point to positive progress. There appear to be only 400-500 seats remaining for Sunday’s match, which kicks off at 7 PM PT. What’s more, the club is ahead of previous years in season ticket sales.
“Season-ticket sales are exceeding expectations,” Reign FC majority owner Bill Predmore confirmed to Sounder at Heart. “We anticipate besting our all-time record for season-ticket sales, both in terms of the absolute number of season-tickets sold and revenue generated from those sales.”
Tacoma has the opportunity to become its own regional professional sports engine, and the city has already embraced Reign FC in ways Seattle never quite did. With fewer competing professional sports teams, the 2-5-3 has more time to give the Reign the marketing attention they’ve craved and deserved in recent years. The new partnership with the Tacoma Rainiers, and Adrian Hanauer coming to the table as a minority owner, gives the club even greater staff power and financial resources.
Don’t discount the political energy behind this team either. During the Reign’s relocation announcement, Tacoma mayor Victoria Woodards said, “Let’s be frank with one another, women haven’t got the most investments in sports. Here in Tacoma, we’re going to get it right and not just in the sport, the women who play the sport. They deserve to play on fields and spaces that are just as good as the ones the men play on.”
But let it be known: this team is not just for Tacoma. It’s for all who call Washington state home. And the Predmores, who are deeply rooted in Seattle, understand the sacrifice fans in Seattle and further north have to make to get to Reign FC’s new home. That is why, to make the trip a little easier, the club partnered with Rally Bus and Starline Luxury Coaches to provide Seattle-based fans with round-trip bus tickets to the stadium this year. Tickets cost $25 and can be purchased at rally.co/reign-fc.
Buses to Cheney Stadium will have three pickup locations in the Seattle area: Northgate Mall, King Street Station and Southcenter. Buses will drop riders off at Cheney Stadium approximately one hour prior to kickoff and depart 30 minutes after the final whistle.
The fun news continues. Rally Bus riders may bring their own food and beverages (including alcohol) for rides down to Cheney Stadium. However, Cheney Stadium policies do not allow fans to bring outside food or beverages into the stadium. So drink the alcohol on the ride down with your fellow supporters.
On Sunday, Reign FC have the opportunity to write a new history in Tacoma — a bold one that is rooted in the grit woven throughout the team’s play and the city’s fabric. Grit City is ready to embrace the club, but we can all be a part of the story. It all starts Sunday at Cheney.