Beautiful weather. Cold drinks. Tasty food. Meeting with old friends. Making new.
Sounders Day 2022 was epic!
We had a blast at our annual party with more than 500 people gathered on a perfect 72 degree day on the roof deck of First Mode in Seattle.
After beers and BBQ, we headed across the street to Lumen Field and watched the Sounders get a huge 1-0 win over FC Dallas.
A big shout out to our presenting sponsor First Mode as well as gold sponsor WaFd for bringing the community together for this fun event.
First Mode is a Seattle engineering company helping to power the world’s largest zero-emission vehicle.
“The problems we’re trying to fix are huge,” First Mode CEO Chris Voorhees told the crowd. “We need all the help we can get.”
And a big thanks to Sounders legend Steve Zakuani, who joined us for a chat with GeekWire co-founder John Cook.
Zakuani, the number one pick in the 2009 MLS SuperDraft, played for the Sounders from 2009-2013, scoring 17 goals in 80 appearances. He suffered a career-threatening foot injury in 2011, but was able to recover and play again. Zakuani, 34, wrote a book called 500 days for the journey he made to return to the field.
“For many of you, your greatest victories and successes will be right on the other side of this turmoil and adversity that you are facing,” he said. “And I’ll tell you, stick with it. One day it will all come together and it will be worth it.”
Read on for more from Zakuani and watch the full interview below along with photos from Sounders Day. And be sure to get your tickets to our next event, the GeekWire Summit on October 6-7.
Why he stayed in Seattle after he retired: I have been associated with the Sounders for 12 years now. I am very close to the team. It’s a great soccer community. I’m a fan of the game as well, and being here around everyone every day, I couldn’t choose anywhere else in the US to live. It’s the people, the culture and the football fans that kept me here.
On the fastest Sounders players ever: Jordan Morris, DeAndre Yedlin and Steve Zakuani.
On the current Sounders player he would like to play with: Captain Nicolás Lodeiro. He is the best player in our history, maybe.
In advice for entrepreneurs facing tough times and moving forward: When it comes to dealing with challenges and adversity, whether you’re an athlete or an entrepreneur, the best advice I got was from one of my coaches at the Sounders. He said, ‘stick with it every day, just stick with it.’
It’s important to remind yourself that even a half step forward is still forward progress. I think most people give up right when it’s actually about to come back. There are people who had my injury and never came back. And the difference was that I just stayed with it.
It took me almost two years. But in the end, being back on that pitch in front of all the fans, it’s one of the best nights of my life and it was worth it.
Keep scrolling for more images from the rooftop BBQ party: