WATCH: Fifth division, 5,000 fans? Grand Rapids FC packs 'em in for season finale | SIDELINE

If you had told me, 15 years ago, that a fifth-tier, semi-pro soccer team in western Michigan would pack in 5,000 fans, I'd have laughed in your face.

It feels good to be wrong:

I will never get tired of seeing our beautiful game take hold in locations previously thought untouchable. Congrats to Grand Rapids FC on a successful debut season in the Great Lakes Premier League (officially part of the USASA, which is the fifth tier of the US Soccer Pyramid). They've had multiple crowds over 5,000 in their first year of existence, and surely many more to come.

And no matter where you live, here – once again – is the first and most important rule of growing the game: Get out there and support your local.

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