How did all this get started ?
Mark Coker (of Seattle, WA) had the idea one day, maybe he had drank too much or something? Everyone seemed to like it, though, and after a few mind melds some delusional soccer friends decided to go ahead with the project. It was purely coincidental that several folks had traveled to Korea the month before for the World Cup and had wished they had a comprehensive travel guide if information that had been posted in various different places.
How did you get everyone to write it?
We solicited members from Sams Army, the MLS & A-League supporters clubs and soccer's internet hot spots (not to be confused with hot internet dating spots) such as NAS, uslfans.com, and Bigsoccer. After that it was personal favors (NOTE that says personal), light threats, cashing in favors, the occasional bullwhip, and forcing people to wear 1996 San Jose Clash jerseys in public, etc. In the end nothing works for certain people. A few people even promised to write then chickened out, can you imagine that? Anyway, 60 volunteers later we have covered a lot of ground but there's still a lot of work left over for those who like that sort of thing.
Why did you create it?
Well the front webpage states " Welcome to the "The Traveler's Guide to American Soccer. The information collected here is intended to provide fans with an interest in soccer in the United States information on the top soccer spots throughout the country". That sounds good enough, don't you think? Also, we wanted to provide a centrally, organized location for soccer travelers in America and world to find information about traveling to other cities. Many of us also happen to be certifiably crazy or happened to have nothing better to do at the time. "Time for your electro shock treatment Mr. BD".
Can I contribute in some way?
If you'd like to contribute please let us know and if your town isn't mentioned or you'd like to add info missing or un correct or out-dated to one of our guides that have already been started please get in touch through the contact link on the webpage! We would love to hear from you!! The more the merrier. Stop it!!! If anything we are all hoping that this project can bring all American soccer fanatics together to complete this goal of a travel guide/companion to American soccer. Cars, large sums of cash, and jewelry are also acceptable just remember to make contributions out to Uncle Vito.
Can I get paid for my contributions?
One person asked this... once. Some say he later appeared as an extra on the Sopranos and was never heard from again. We wouldn't know anything about that, though... Dog, put down the power drill. Seriously though, this is 100% grass roots volunteer work folks.
Are there any plans for a hard copy book version?
It was tossed about and a few organizations showed some interest. That is until everyone realized it wouldn't make any money. It is now mostly a labor of love (well for some of us). In the future if there are ever any proceeds or there are profits from this project that money will then be donated to the development of youth soccer in the United States via the US Soccer Foundation. *Link*.
What's next ?
We would like to finish a few remaining cities (Cincinnati (aka Senger town), Milwaukee (2 authors volunteer, then disappear), Syracuse (it's in the pipe), San Diego (Don't take any wooden nickels) oooh and Anchorage, Bula Bula, Painted Post, New Moscow, Hell, CA. et. al.).
Also we have just begun work on a special Guide for Americans traveling to Germany in 2006 for the next World Cup. This is quite a major project or as some may call it insanity. We have already claimed 20 souls, I mean volunteers, and look forward to having something tangible put together sometime in 2004/2005. If you would like to contribute to this guide let us know through the contact page.