Q: What is a Supporters Group and why do they exist?
A: As you may already know, soccer is a completely different experience than other professional sports. We don’t wait around for the announcer or the scoreboard to tell us to cheer. We don’t wait for a song to start playing over the P.A. system before we start singing. We take an active role in creating the fun, yet charmingly hostile for opposing players, environment on FC Cincinnati Matchdays.
Joining a Supporters Group lets you be part of that process. You get to help make the decisions and take part in the activities that shape FC Cincinnati and the experience at FC Cincinnati matches.
Q: How did the Pride get started?
A: The Pride was originally started by a few friends in 2015. They had heard rumors of a new professional soccer team launching in Cincinnati and wanted to be ready to help make the team successful and grow support for the sport of soccer.
For a more detailed history of the Pride, you can visit our “History of the Pride” section under "About Us".
Q: Where did the name “The Pride” come from?
A: The original badge of FC Cincinnati featured a winged lion carrying a sword (the “knifey lion” you may have heard about elsewhere). We chose the name “Pride” as a tribute to the official term for a family of lions and to honor the feeling of pride in our city that supporting a soccer team brought.
Q: Why should I join The Pride as my supporters group?
A: At The Pride, we welcome members of all backgrounds to our organization. We don’t care if you’ve been a soccer fan your entire life, or just recently started following the sport. We believe everyone has the ability to contribute and to help make FC Cincinnati one of the best clubs on the planet.
As a member of the Pride, you’ll have access to all of our events as well as our discussion group on Slack, where our members discuss everything from the latest FCC match to activities and events around town (also food, a lot of food discussion too). Members also have access to exclusive discounts around town, access to our in-group ticket exchange, and the ability to vote for and hold office in the organization.
Q: What kinds of things does The Pride do?
A: Our activities depend on the time of year, for obvious reasons. During the soccer season (and the weeks leading up to the soccer season) we are focused on the Matchday experience at FC Cincinnati matches. We work with other Supporters Groups to host painting nights, where the flags, banners, two-poles, and (sometimes) the giant tifos displayed in the Supporters’ Section prior to kickoff. We also help coordinate chants and songs and all in-game activity. We gather before home matches to drink and prepare, we gather during away matches to watch FCC as a group. For some away matches, we coordinate travel arrangements for our members so that we can support FC Cincinnati, in person, wherever they may go.
In addition to our soccer-related activities, the Pride is active in the community as well. We participate in charitable activities around Cincinnati and raise money for causes. We also hold social events, where soccer fans can come together and have an excuse to drink (oftentimes for no reason at all).
Q: So, who is in charge of The Pride?
A: The Pride is a non-profit, all volunteer, 100% member-run organization. The officers of the Pride are all elected by fellow members to serve two year terms in office. Anyone who meets the eligibility requirements contained within the bylaws of the Pride can run for office at our year-end meeting. Pursuant to the bylaws of the Pride, no officer of the Pride receives any compensation for their efforts.
For more information about the current officers in the Pride’s executive board, you can visit our Executive Board webpage.
Q: Why does it cost money every year to become or remain a member of The Pride?
A: Part of the membership costs every season goes to provide the items included in the membership package, such as the yearly Pride Scarf.
The remainder of all yearly dues not spent on the membership package are placed into an account that is used to provide and create the things that makes FC Cincinnati matches so special. This includes smoke devices, flags, banners, in-stadium displays, and the cost of paint and materials to create those. Additionally, member dues are used for membership events and member-related activities.
Collecting yearly dues ensures that we can always be financially solvent and provide a great experience (and new scarf) year after year!
Q: Is The Pride affiliated with FC Cincinnati?
A: The Pride is a completely independent supporters group. While we support FC Cincinnati completely on match days, we keep our business separate from that of the club.
Independence in a supporters group is crucial to the process because it allows us to be an advocate for supporters and fans alike. And, while we work with FC Cincinnati front office members to ensure a positive match experience for all, we will never serve as a mouthpiece or marketing team for the club. They have people who are well paid to handle that anyway.
Q: What is The Pride Honor Code?
A: The Pride Honor Code is a statement of ideals that we seek to uphold while we support FC Cincinnati. We strongly believe that soccer is for everyone, and that no individual should feel unwelcome at any of our gatherings — be it on match day or otherwise. Our honor code, which all members must agree to abide by, puts in writing our commitment to our club, our city, and one another. Each and every member is empowered, and indeed obligated, to report misconduct to our Honor Board for it to be dealt with.
Q: Where does The Pride meet for FC Cincinnati matches?
A: For home FCC matches, the Pride meets at Top Cats on Short Vine in Clifton. For away FCC matches, the Pride meets at Molly Malone’s in Covington to watch matches together.
Q: How can I get involved with The Pride?
A: There are many different ways you can get involved with the SG, but the easiest way is to simply show up for events and volunteer to help! Running a supporters group requires the collaborative effort of many different people with many different skillsets, from graphic designers to accountants (and everything in between). If you want to be more involved in the FC Cincinnati community, we can find someplace for you to help — just ask!
Q: I’ve read through all this, and I really just need to know how I get my scarf!
A: That isn’t technically a question, FYI.
If you have paid your membership dues and need to pick a scarf or membership package, you can e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or message one of the execs on Slack to coordinate a pickup.