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Soccer Stars to Kick Off Great Park Sports Park

Meet Mauricio Cienfuegos at the Great Park Anniversary Celebration

Soccer Stars to Kick Off Great Park Sports Park

June 23, 2011 – IRVINE, California – Soccer balls will fly at the Great Park starting July 9, with MLS and LA Galaxy soccer legend Mauricio Cienfuegos on hand at “Growing the Park,” the Park’s anniversary event. The LA Galaxy Futboleros and Olympic soccer players will also join in the celebration on the North Lawn, the Park’s nine-acre multipurpose field and the first major element of the Sports Park.

LA Galaxy Academy, UCI championship coaches, and former Olympic and Soccer Hall of Fame players representing the Coast Soccer League will be there to show you how to sharpen your soccer skills and share tips on how to improve your game.

In addition to meeting soccer stars, kids can enjoy the LA Galaxy Street Team mobile soccer experience, featuring interactive games and giveaways. Kids can also learn tricks from the Galaxy Futboleros soccer entertainers, who will perform soccer skills that combine speed, strength and balance. The Galaxy Academy will offer a free 30 minute kids soccer clinic from 5:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.

MLS and LA Galaxy legend Mauricio Cienfuegos will be signing autographs from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. UCI and Coast Soccer League will conduct a kids soccer clinic from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 pm. featuring UCI Men’s Soccer Team Coaches Scott Juniper, George Kuntz and Peter Boyer. Paul Caligiuri, former US National Team Member, NCAA All American & National Soccer Hall of Fame and Thomas Dooley, former Captain US National Team, US Soccer Athlete of the Year, and currently Player Development Manager South Coast Bayern Futbol Club will be signing autographs.

“Growing the Park” is a day and evening of non-stop fun for all ages featuring air show style aerial performances, a petting zoo, military vehicle displays, cooking demonstrations and arts activities. Sports activities on the North Lawn will continue after the event with regular, drop-in sports clinics at the Park starting in August.

Parking opens for Growing the Park at 2:00 p.m., Saturday July 9, and the event is open from 3:00 to 9:30 p.m. Admission and parking are free. There will be a special Great Park entrance for this event: Take Jeffrey Road exit from either the 5 or 405 Freeway and turn right on Trabuco.

Growing the Park features five themed areas for visitors to enjoy, each representing an aspect of the Great Park: The Back Forty, The Runway, Sky’s the Limit, Great Park Gallery, and The Outfield.

  1. The Back Forty: Agriculture & Environment – Highlights agriculture history.  The area includes a petting zoo, hands-on agricultural craft activities and cooking demonstrations.
  2. Great Park Gallery: Arts & Culture – Showcases arts and culture in the new Palm Court Artists Village.  The area includes art displays and exhibits, demonstrations, local performers, hands-on activities and community partner booths.
  3. The Runway: Military & Aviation, Technology & the Future – Presents military history.  Includes vintage aircraft and military vehicle displays, aerial entertainment and more.
  4. The Outfield: Sports & Recreation – Features sports, health and wellness.  It will Include sports and fitness play area, demonstrations and community partner booths.
  5. Sky’s the Limit: – Represents the future of the Great Park.  Includes Kids Rock playground, open play area and viewing area of aerial entertainment.

About the Great Park
The Orange County Great Park, with its 1,347-acre master plan, is the focal point of the redevelopment of the publicly-owned portion of the 4,700-acre former Marine Corps Air Station, El Toro. The Great Park is currently 27.5 acres and includes an iconic tethered helium balloon that rises 400 feet in the air, providing an aerial view of Park development. A $70 million development plan to expand the Park to more than 200 acres is currently underway. The plan will build out a core section of the Park for the most immediate and wide-ranging public benefit, including the initial components of the sports park, a 114-acre agricultural area, and an art and culture exhibition space. For more information, please go to www.ocgp.org

Press Contact:
Jenn Starnes
Public Information Officer
Orange County Great Park Corporation
(949) 724-6574