As the San Jose Earthquakes prepare for the 2005 MLS season opener on Saturday night against the New England Revolution at 7:00 p.m. at Spartan Stadium, the players took a break from training on Tuesday evening to celebrate the beginning of the season at Club Deep in San Pedro Square in downtown San Jose.
In an exclusive, invitation only event for sponsors and selected Earthquakes VIP's, the 2005 edition of the Earthquakes and the Tremorz were unveiled by head coach Dominic Kinnear and President & General Manager Alexi Lalas.
The Earthquakes commemorative tenth season DVD, The 100 Greatest Goals In Earthquakes History, also made its debut, playing continuously on the numerous television sets throughout Deep while players, coaches, Tremorz, sponsors and fans mingled. Kinnear gave a brief talk, introducing the entire team one-by-one to the crowd. The loudest cheers were reserved for returning fan favorite Ronald Cerritos, captain Wade Barrett, goalkeeper Pat Onstad and the long-time San Jose crowd pleaser, Troy Dayak.
"Events like these are a great way for us to meet the fans and get excited about Saturday," Kinnear said. "I think the fans are going to see that we are going to work hard on Saturday's to make this a team they can be proud of."
The Earthquakes opening week festivities continue on Wednesday, March 30 with a benefit event for Bay Area SCORES at the Britannia Arms in downtown San Jose in conjunction with a viewing party for the United States vs. Guatemala World Cup Qualifying match. The festivities start at 5:00 p.m. PT, as Eddie Robinson, Kevin Goldthwaite, Danny O'Rourke, Robby Fulton, Ricardo Clark, Roger Levesque and Lalas will be on hand as celebrity bartenders to help support Bay Area SCORES. Tips given to the Earthquakes celebrity bartenders will all go to support SCORES. The event will also feature trivia contests and raffles for Earthquakes memorabilia.
Also at the Britannia Arms, Bay Area SCORES is kicking off the Corporate Cup Soccer Tournament. They are seeking more teams from area companies to compete against the likes of Google, Yahoo!, Starbucks and The GAP for a chance to play in the finals at Spartan Stadium before the Earthquakes vs. Galaxy game in June.
As the Quakes match-up against New England approaches, the week culminates in a kick-off rally on Thursday, March 31 at Cesar Chavez Park in downtown San Jose at 5:00 p.m. PT. In conjunction with the San Jose Sports Authority and Soccer Silicon Valley, the San Jose Earthquakes will introduce to the media and general public the 2005 edition of the team.
City of San Jose Mayor Ron Gonzales and City of Santa Clara Mayor Patricia Mahan will both be in attendance at the rally. As part of the weeklong Quakes festivities leading up to the game, the club will introduce the 2005 Quakes as well as unveil the team's new adidas uniforms at the rally. Fans will have an opportunity at the rally to meet and get autographs from all of this year's Quakes players and coaches. Quakes play-by-play announcer John Shrader will emcee the event, which will include giveaways, and a post-event party at McCormick & Schmick's Seafood Restaurant for those attending the rally.