This Saturday, at 8 a.m., the Columbia Heights area of the District will be filled with familiar sounds.
Soccer balls being kicked. Shouts of communication between teammates. And, of course, exultations of excitement.
Yes, similar to a typical DC SCORES game day, soccer games will be taking place at several sites in the neighborhood. Only this time, adults will be playing the games — all for the kids' cause.
The Columbia Heights Cup — last year known as the Holiday Classic — is set to take over Cardozo and Bell high schools and Tubman Elementary School Saturday, as 17 teams battle for bragging rights as best in the Heights.
The tournament to raise money for DC SCORES is being put on by our longtime partner District Sports — headed by tournament organizer Alex Bearman — which runs the most adult rec soccer leagues in the District.
The event isn't just about soccer, either. Beginning at 12 p.m., Duffy's Irish Pub will open its doors early for the second consecutive year to accommodate tournament participants in need of a break from the cold and something to warm them up.
Not only that, but Duffy's is offering specials all day to tournament participants; showing the the Barcelona-Real Madrid game (with sound) at 4 p.m.; providing free drink tickets to each team; and has provided gift certificates of $100 (tournament winner) and $50 (Most Creative Team Name — to be announced).
And Starbucks, another dedicated partner of DC SCORES, is providing coffee at the beginning of the day – a much-needed stimulator for early morning soccer in December.
Round-robin play for the 17 teams will begin at 8 a.m. and continue at the three sites until about 2 p.m., when the knockout rounds — beginning with the quarterfinals — will take place at Cardozo.
By the end of the afternoon, we hope that everyone will have made their way to Duffy's to celebrate the District's largest winter charity soccer tournament and making a difference, by playing soccer, in the lives of over 800 youth soccer players in our program.