After less than five months of work, Loudoun United FC’s stadium is open and ready to welcome fans to the stands Friday night for the team’s remaining 12 home games in 2019, along with other community events.
A few hundred residents traveled to Philip A. Bolen Memorial Park near Leesburg on Saturday to see Loudoun United and county leaders cut the ribbon to the 5,000-seat Segra Field stadium in preparation for the team’s first official home game against Charlotte Independence this Friday, Aug. 9. In addition to the ribbon cutting, attendees also were treated to up-close views of the field, autographs from players and multiple food and beverage vendors.
In attendance at the ceremony were Dave Johnson, D.C. United’s television voice, D.C. United CEO and managing general owner Jason Levien, Loudoun United Chief Operations Officer Adam Behnke, Loudoun County Department of Economic Development Executive Director Buddy Rizer, Loudoun Sheriff Mike Chapman and County Chairwoman Phyllis Randall (D-At Large), along with nearly every county supervisor.
Common among the remarks by each speaker were two themes—that Loudoun’s leaders are proactive in their drive to make the county great and that Loudoun will one day be known for its soccer, just as it’s known today for other attractions like wineries and breweries.
Levien said Segra Field, part of a $15 million complex that also will include a D.C. United training center and headquarters that is being financed by the county government and paid back by the franchise through lease payments, would be a place where not only soccer is played, but where life events happen. He said that while people talked about Loudoun being wine country 20 years ago, they’ll be talking about soccer in 20-30 years from now.
Supervisor Geary Higgins (R-Catoctin), whose district includes the new stadium, echoed Levien’s remarks, noting that Loudoun is already one of the top jurisdictions for wine and cattle, but that it will soon become the nation’s number one soccer destination. “This is a whole new level of soccer,” he said.
To bring the stadium’s grand opening to fruition, work began long before the county entered into talks with the team. Supervisor Matthew Letourneau (R-Dulles) pointed out that county leaders have been trying to attract a major league sports organization for years.
He mentioned that the local chapter of Commercial Real Estate Women last fall presented the partnership between the county and Loudoun United with its Deal of the Year award. “It’s really about bettering our community,” he said.
Randall said the team and stadium would cultivate world-class soccer players for years to come. “This right here puts the cherry on top of the Sundae,” she said.
In addition to a “We Are Loudoun” chant led by Behnke, the speakers all invited attendees out to the team’s first home fight this Friday.
“How cool is it, the party of the year is going to be at Segra Field,” Johnson said, noting that Loudoun United is also “loud and united.”
To purchase tickets for Loudoun United’s inaugural home game or others from now until the season ends in October, go to loudoununitedfc.com.