Fire History

Chicago Fire Soccer Club Marks 20th Season Milestone with Year-Long Celebration

20th Season Kickoff

CHICAGO(March 10, 2017) — Ahead of Saturday’s 2017 home opener, the Chicago Fire Soccer Club today unveiled plans for celebrating the club’s historic 20th Season in Major League Soccer, including Valspar Corporation’s presenting partnership of the milestone campaign.

The Chicago Fire’s 20th Season, presented by Valspar, will come to life through a wide range of new fan-focused initiatives. Among the most notable activations is the creation of club-centric commemorative memorabilia and merchandise, a dedicated digital microsite (, a special mid-summer celebration benefiting the Chicago Fire Foundation and prominent matchday elements.

“The club’s 20th year marks a momentous time for the Chicago Fire and the loyal fans and supporters who have been with us along the way,” said Chicago Fire COO Atul Khosla. “We’re thrilled to extend our Valspar partnership in commemorating this milestone season in addition to what lies ahead. This is a special time for our club and we look forward to celebrating with our fans.”

Throughout the year, fans and followers of the Chicago Fire on social media will see recurring use of the hashtag #HeartThisClub, a versatile means of expressing the club’s unique significance in the lives of supporters over 20 seasons.

In conjunction with that campaign, Fire fans will have their first opportunity to interact with the digital platform through a public vote to determine featured players in a commemorative deck of playing cards. The vote will feature a collection of the club’s top players from its first 20 seasons, with the final deck of playing cards serving as a premium fan giveaway item during Valspar’s title night on Saturday, August 19.

“Valspar is honored to partner with Chicago Fire to present their historic 20th season,” said Valspar Senior Vice President and General Manager of North American Consumer Products Aaron Erter. “This is a wonderful platform to involve the local community in authentic fan engagement, as well as offering us international visibility thanks to soccer’s incredible global presence. Major League Soccer’s popularity continues to grow by leaps and bounds. We’re thrilled to continue to be part of the Fire Family and look forward to this season-long celebration.”

Prior to the season opener, Chicago Fire raised more than $100,000 for the Chicago Fire Foundation at the team’s kickoff luncheon and announced the expansion of the Foundation’s cornerstone P.L.A.Y.S. (Participate, Learn, Achieve, Youth Soccer) Program, which will reach 20 Chicagoland public schools in the club’s 20th Season. P.L.A.Y.S. integrates soccer with social and emotional learning (SEL) to not only help kids learn and enjoy soccer, but also strengthen academic performance to make a positive impact on the lives of underserved youth throughout Chicago.

Adding to the milestone year’s significance is previously announced news that the Chicago Fire will be the host club for the 2017 Target MLS All-Star Game at Chicago’s Soldier Field on Aug. 2. The league’s 22nd annual mid-summer match will provide new and existing soccer supporters a chance to celebrate the sport and see a litany of top players from around the world.

Additional details related to club-hosted celebrations and fan engagement opportunities – including playing card-themed fan photo shoots -- will be announced at a later date. Fans are invited to join the conversation and share the ways they love the Chicago Fire by using the hashtag #HeartThisClub and tagging @ChicagoFire on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.