You know when you are in a place where the lights have to "warm up", there is some history involved. Earlier this month, Moravian Soccer Coach Todd Ervin was kind enough to take an hour out of his day to let me poke around the old Steel Field Complex inside and out. For those of you that do not know, underneath the stands is an entire sports complex that includes a small gym. I had always taken this place for granted growing up, we used to practice indoor soccer in the gym during the winters for the Bethlehem Soccer Club. I also played intramural sports down there as a Moravian student. It was really just a place to play ball at the time...just another building.
Fast forward twenty years and here we are running this website. In the early stages of putting some content together we stumble across this website www.bethlehemsteelsoccer.org and start poking all around learning more about the history of the Bethlehem Steel Soccer Club circa 1913-1930. That is when I first realized just how vitally important and special this old building is.
Built In 1913 the Bethlehem Steel Athletic Field is the country's first soccer-specific stadium.
Now, I feel like a total idiot, that I didn't know this for all this time. Worst yet I can see the structure from my home office window! But, how special is that? In hindsight, it really all makes sense...the roots are so deep here. It just seemed second nature at the time -- all the local love and passion for this game. But, come to realize many of those larger than life soccer figures, that I learned from were ACTUALLY 2nd and 3rd generation Bethlehem footballers. Now, here I am (in my early-mid 40s) with a all my buddies coaching schools and running youth leagues -- and we are probably mostly 4th generation. Finally, here comes my son and baby girl and they are our next generation. All stemming from really one place and one field. Think about that the next time you are at one of the many HUGE soccer events that go on here locally each year. Please realize why Bethlehem, PA and the beautiful game are such a special combination. Enjoy the picture gallery. See and read the bronze plaque that is still displayed on the east side of the structure. There is over 100 years of soccer history in those stands. And those stands are why you are reading this article today. Visit it and breathe it in. I know I am glad I did. I have had the pleasure and honor of playing with and for many local legends...most of whom are still VERY active in the game and many of whom are still IN THIS TOWN. There is a family spirit that exists thru this game in this area that is beyond special...we all know it. The memories and friendships are everlasting. All I know is, I want to not only keep it alive, but make it stronger. That is why creating this site was so important to us. I hope you're enjoying it so far. But, I can't emphasize enough, we are just getting started here at the Bethlehem Futbol Factory. Please support us anyway you can: follow, like and click away. Do not hesitate to share all Bethlehem Soccer info with us -- just click the big red button in the corner of the home page and send it -- we'll post it one way or another.
Also, please support the Bethlehem Steel FC, the experience is really worth the trip over/thru the mountain! The quality of play is good and entertaining. I can't count the number of familiar soccer faces I see at each and every game...so much fun!
Lastly, high school and college camps have started up. We will be covering them and everything through the youth clubs...even down to GBSL! Thanks for stopping by!