PORTLAND, Ore. – The MLS store is celebrating Scarftember – and traditions around scarves vary from team to team across the league. But for the Portland Timbers, scarf culture stays particularly strong. If you’re at Providence Park for a Timbers match, it’s a virtual scarf fashion show.
“People eat them up, man,” says Drew Picard, a member of the Timbers Army merchandise team and administrator of the Facebook group PTFC Scarf Squad. “You post a new scarf launch and people lose their minds over it. It’s pretty awesome.”
Scarf displays spread onto the field, too, starting with head Coach Caleb Porter, who always walks on donning various scarves.
Then there’s the pageantry around the team’s mascot, Timber Joey. Scarves decorate the giant log he slices with a chainsaw to honor a goal or clean sheet.
Timber Joey—Joey Weber, in life outside soccer--started this tradition when he first took over as mascot in 2008, during the Timbers’ USL era. That’s when a fan tossed him a scarf from the stands.
“I wore it for a little bit, but it just got too hot running up and down the stairs, so I put it on the log,” says Joey Weber, aka Timber Joey. “And from then on it seems like almost every time they create a new scarf, one gets tossed down to me for the log.”
He said almost every scarf draped over the log is one that was “offered up” by supporters, just one more way scarf culture defines game day in the Rose City.
“It’s a collector’s item for a lot of people to branch out and get as many different scarfs as they can,” Weber says. “But this is kind of unique because we have scarfs for almost every simple occasion. It kind of represents a little of everything.”
If you'vre inspired to add to your own collection, check out MLS's Kick Childhood Cancer and the social campaign Scarftember. Designer Sophia Chang has created a Kick Childhood Cancer scarf for every MLS team, with proceeds from their sales to benefit the Children's Oncology Group, one of the leading childhood cancer experts in the world and a partner of MLS Works.
In addition, you can also support Kick Childhood Cancer by posting a photo of you with your favorite MLS scarf to Twitter or Instagram, using the hashtag #ScarvesUp and tagging @MLS. The league will donate $1 for each post.