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“Soccer in the Circle” Brings World Cup to Dupont Circle

by Borderstan.com June 2, 2010 at 12:21 am 1,257 10 Comments

World Cup Soccer in the Circle is part of the Dupont Festival series. (Dupont Festival website)

Want to watch some World Cup soccer outdoors in Dupont Circle?

You can support Soccer in the Circle, which is raising money to bring World Cup soccer on big screens to Dupont Circle, as part of the Dupont Festival events. (You can also find Soccer in the Circle on Facebook.)

According to Soccer in the Circle organizer Michael Lipin, “We plan to set up two big screens in Dupont Circle Park for live broadcasts of all three matches on Saturday, June 12, including South Korea vs Greece, 7:30 am kickoff… Argentina vs Nigeria, 10 am kickoff… and the main event, USA vs England, 2:30 pm kickoff.” World Cup is being hosted by South Africa this year, which is 6 hours ahead of DC.

Lipin says they are close to the $20,000 needed to cover the cost of the kickoff games on June 12, with additional funds going toward screening additional World Cup games. On Wednesday, the Dupont Festival received the FIFA license that will allow them to show the games. The FIFA World Cup final is Sunday, July 11.

Dupont Festival Soccer in the Circle funds go toward rental of audio-visual equipment, security, porta-potties, a FIFA license fee, and a cost-recovery deposit to be paid to the National Park Service.

Lipin says that donations are tax-deductible and are made through Dupont Festival, a 501(c)(3) charitable group. Donations can be made via the group’s PayPal site.

The purpose of Dupont Festival is to organize and implement a wide range of outdoor and indoor activities in the greater Dupont Circle area throughout the year.

In related news, Washington Business Journal reported Tuesday that bars in DC have received approval to open at 7 am during World Cup, “but it has barred those locations from selling alcohol any earlier than their licenses currently allow.” In DC bars can begin serving alcohol at 8 am Monday through Saturday and at 10 am on Sundays.

  • I want to follow up on my tweet from last night, as you seemed a little defensive. My suggesting that the “Soccer in the Circle” could be a potential conflict with the Capital Pride Parade was a mere observation– but a just one.

    The final game, England v USA should finish a little before 4:30pm, the Pride Parade starts at 6:30pm at Dupont Circle. Its all about visitor numbers, tens of thousands line the streets to watch the parade each year, using the Circle as a focal point, arriving hours before the parade begins. Will the giant TV still be up, will there be enough time to take it down, will it get in the way of the tens of thousands of LGBT visitors? Legitimate questions.

    For reference, I’m gay, I’m English and a huge football fan, I think its a great idea, nothing better than watching a game– especially one of this size with a group of sport hungry fans.

    • We’re all gay here. And I don’t even enjoy soccer.

      DC still has more than a bit of small-town attitude. People seem to “worry” a great deal about any and all public events — events that other cities would take in stride. Dupont Festival is organized in conjunction with ANC 2B and I have a lot of faith in the commissioners who are involved with these events.

      With all due respect, DC Brit, people do watch the parade from inside Dupont Circle, but the vast majority of people watch it from other places along the parade route — especially 17th Street NW. I am not sure how many people watch the DC Pride parades here, but I know it is NOT in the tens of thousands and you could never fit tens of thousands of people into the Circle, screens or no screens. The pride parades in DC are quite small when compared to SF, Chicago, NY or other large cities.

  • Taboo

    I think the whole Dupont Festival series is wonderful, including World Cup soccer — even though soccer does nothing for me, personally. DC is so much more alive now than it was 10 or 15 years ago. It was such a sleepy city in past years.

    The fact that there will be soccer in the Circle early in the day followed by the Gay Pride Parade early in the evening shows just how much is happening in DC now.

    So far I have not heard a peep from any of the self-appointed guardians of public morals in the Dupont area about soccer on the big screen in the Circle. This surprises me as I would genuinely have thought that there would have been some “good, concerned citizens” (aren’t they always “concerned?”) protesting the fact that actual people might enjoy the Circle for a sporting-related event (yee Gods!).

    Anyway, thanks to everyone involved.

  • @mattyillini If I implied that tens of thousands watched the parade from inside the Circle that’s not where I was going, in general tens of thousands watch. All I’m saying is, it would be prudent for the folks over at “Soccer in the Circle” to take this into consideration (if they already haven’t). The Capital Pride website claims that it is the 3rd largest Pride event in the country, whether that is true or not it shouldn’t be ignored.

    Again, I think its a great idea, @Taboo makes a great point– for these two events to potentially be happening in the same location on the same day shows how far DC has come and I’m sure the spirit of both festivals will overlap to create a great day.

    • If the DC pride event is #3, that would HAVE to include the Sunday event on Pennsylvania Avenue, which IS a good-sized event. The parade itself? Not so much. Thanks!

      • All it would take is a quick email to the Capital Pride organizers, who give a rough estimate of about 100,000 people that span the Parade route on the Saturday. Whether that number is inflated or not, its substantial. Thanks!

      • Jack Jacobson

        I’ve spoken to the Capital Pride organizers at length about this. There is no issue. Park Police are on board. MPD is on board. Dupont Festival is on board. The ANC is on board. Everyone is on board and both events will showcase that Dupont Circle truly can walk and chew gum at the same time.

        Jack Jacobson, Commissioner, ANC 2B04

      • Excellent. All it took was an afternoon of heated debate. Now where do I donate?

  • Jack Jacobson

    I’m super excited for this event! The ANC has been working to help get the word out and support Dupont Festival’s initiatives to bring life back to the Circle, and this is an amazing reflection of the excitement, diversity and passion Dupont Circle can exhibit when we finally have a little fun and enjoy ourselves. I look forward to many more events in the future!

  • I would expect the distinct possibility that Dupont Circle will be crowded with a mix of thousands of both Pride partiers and sports fans.

    This is the opposite of something to worry about.


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