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Sounders fan mix game, holiday

The two occasions paired nicely on Saturday evening: St. Patrick’s Day and Sounders FC’s MLS opener at CenturyLink Field.

 Trevor Boze of Everett, who joined two friends in watching the game, was ready to have a good time. Boze’s wife spent about a week preparing the group for the occasion, getting an idea off a social-media site to knit beards for her husband and friend Aaron Martinez. She also knitted three Vikings helmets.

Martinez added to the flare with a kilt and some St. Patrick’s Day garb. As the sun shone on St. Patrick’s revelers late Saturday afternoon, they joined the horde of Sounders fans in traditional drinking, singing and eating.

It’s the fourth opener for the soccer club and the vibe mirrored the first. “It’s especially crazy,” said Martinez of the atmosphere blending with the Irish holiday. F.X. McRory’s Steak Chop & Oyster House had a bagpipe band outside its doors on Occidental Avenue.

As the Emerald City Supporters paraded through the streets to the stadium, fans bounced around in Leprechaun costumes, green and white striped overalls, and green metallic wigs with face paint.

 Most of the 32,000 at the game had official “2012 Sounders FC Season Ticket Holder” scarves around their neck.

“Going to Sounders matches is always so lively,” said Aaron Whitaker, who is from Olympia but rode a party bus from Doyle’s Public House in Tacoma.

“I’ve been to many Seahawks games and Mariners games, but they really embrace the (soccer) culture in Seattle,” Whitaker added. “Especially with the marches and bringing the European feel. It’s awesome.”

When night fell, the Emerald City Supporters became rowdier. Flickering green neon lights in the new Hawks Nest seating beamed brighter.

“The spirit is all around,” said Tricia Johnson.

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