The Clackamas Print enlists in the Timber Army

“We are the Timbers, the Portland Timbers;
Green and Gold, Green and Gold, Green and Gold, Gold, Gold!
With our friends now, up to the city;
We’re gonna shake the gates of hell!”

Entering into Providence Park, you’re suddenly heavily enveloped in green and gold. Scarves, shirts, hats, massive flags, and the match hasn’t even started yet.

For a rookie Timbers experience, you’re in for a treat.

These fans, you’ll come to learn, are unlike any other. With what they say, ‘hearts on their sleeves and thousands of voices strong’, it’s a lively, rowdy and intense experience, and I wasn’t even in the thick of it.

The Timbers were faced against D.C. United, the major league soccer team of Washington, D.C. The sun was shining, and as the other rookie photographer Katie Archer and I got closer to the stadium, you could tell, as always, that it was a Timbers day. The local restaurants were filled with green and gold clad fans, waiting for the 7:30 p.m. match to start. From the oldest to the youngest, everyone was turning out for this game. In fact, I had no idea what the colors were for the other team, they lacked such support. Sorry, guys.

The start of the match, the crowd was rowdy. As I snapped photos, I started to learn the chants, and did they start in early. A massive black flag sporting a Grim Reaper holding the iconic axe and the brazen words, “No Pity” swung high in the air, which took more dedication and arm strength than I could ever muster.

And when the Timbers scored? You’ve never heard such a roar. Green and dark yellow smoke streamed out, confetti rained down, and a whole new batch of chants started up- I was worried the place might collapse under the cheering. And as always, the chain saw was revved, and the burly lumber jack cut through a slice of scarf covered log in celebration.

When moral was low, the fans never stopped cheering. And I’m not kidding. It was 90 minutes of non- stop clever chants like, “We’re the Timbers Army / Oy! / The green and white army / We’re the Timbers Army, oh yeah!” (done to the tune of Twisted Sister’s “We’re Not Gonna Take It”, by the way). A chant of “You Are My Sunshine” started, and many iconic others, twisted to fit the Army’s needs to keep their spirit going.

What exactly does it mean to be a fan of the Portland Timbers? Is it facing ridicule over being a soccer fan in a world of football and basketball crazed super fans? Nah, not really. It’s loyalty. It’s blood, sweat and tears shed to cheer on a group of talented athletes, who put it on the line for 90 minutes of entertainment and their love for the sport. It’s accepting a loss and thankfully for this game, celebrating a win, with the most heart bearing love and dedication that I think I’ll ever see come from a crowd. Yeah. It’s loyalty.

Next time you see us, we may be smiling;
Green and Gold, Green and Gold, Green and Gold, Gold, Gold!
Maybe in prison, or on the TV;
We’ll say the Timbers brought us here!

Story by: Erin Carey