Thursday, January 22, 2009

Wall come tumbling down - part 2

City council members Cathy Jolly and John Sharp, representatives of the 6th district which covers the Bannister Mall area. They wanted to have the media opportunity to show the community that progress is being made. The mall is coming down.



There were a couple dozen onlookers at any one time throughot the demo. One group of local residents were there to cheer on the demo and they even brought there own golden shovel. I did not see one person that was against it the whole time I was there.


It is fun to watch...


Demo...


And more demo...


Lots of pieces to salvage...
By the time they were done with the show, most of the north wall (the old Jones Store?) was down.

Does this name sound familiar?

More images can be found at Bannister Mall demo gallery.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Wall come tumbling down...

More images later, but had to start with a few....







Will get the full size gallery up tonight...

Richard Jata Speech

I mentioned in my post about the draft and many other people talked about Chicago Fire draft pick Richard Jata's speech at the draft. Funny, touching, inspiring and humble all at he same time. I was searching through the audio I recorded to see if I had any of it (don't think so) when I found out the MLS Extra Time showed some of it in the recent episode. Skip to the 4 minute mark so you do not have to listen Greg and Shep (unless you really want to).


Richard Jata after his speech...
Nice shoes...

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Mall demolition?

I just got word that media are being invited to Bannister mall tomorrow for some active physical demolition. Sounds good to me....

Stop by tomorrow and hopefully I will have images for you...

Arnaud and Jewsbury contract extension announced

Although it has been reported previously:

The Kansas City Wizards announced Tuesday that midfielders Davy Arnaud and Jack Jewsbury have signed new four-year contracts. Arnaud and Jewsbury became the longest-tenured players on the Wizards roster after Kerry Zavagnin retired in 2008 to join the coaching staff. Per League and club policy, financial details of the contracts were not disclosed.

"Davy Arnaud and Jack Jewsbury are two high-quality individuals and important players for our team,” Technical Director Peter Vermes said. “The signing of both players to long-term contracts helps to solidify their roles within the team. They both started their careers here, and we’re happy that they will continue to wear Kansas City Wizards blue for years to come."

01-20-2009: Cold practice (or what the BEEP am I doing here…)

I was hoping the Wizards would practice indoors today, but no such luck. It was cold, windy and snow flurries kept up most of the practice. The team started with more or less normal warm up activities although it did make them look like a chorus line for awhile.

After the warm ups were complete, half of the team did some drills while the other half did the Beep test. In a beep or bleep test, you run between cones set 20 meters apart to the timing of the pre-recorded beeps. It slowly speeds up until you can not keep time with the beeps. Once you miss a certain number of beeps you drop out. The first round consisted of mostly last year’s starters. As players started to drop out it became real interesting to see who would be the last player running.
It ended up with Conrad and Souter as the last two, Kevin ended up winning and going for a few more rounds by himself.

When the second group started, everyone was placing bets on who would win. The final two was Morsink and Marquess with...
Matt eventually winning.

The team went on to play some small sided games…


While the goalies practiced on the other end.
Pardo...
Kitson?

After that they broke into 3 teams and scrimmaged with full sized goals.
The coldest practice I have been to and the longest. I had to leave as practice was wrapping up so I did not get the interviews I was hoping for. Will stop by practice later this week when it is a warmer day to talk to some players. Seems practice has been moved to later in the day (11:00 – 12:30) for the rest of the week so it will be warmer.

The rest of the photos can be found here.

Supporters at the MLS draft

I had hoped more supporters would be at the draft for all teams. As much fun as it is to watch a couple supporters group try to out chant each other, thought it would be great to watch several of them in action at the same time. Unfortunately I did not see many groups. Chicago had some but they were pretty quiet most of the time. It could be because they did not have many picks early.


The Wizards fans were the second largest group in attendance and were the most vocal and organized, at least of the fans that had teams to support.

The largest group was Eads Brigade. They are supporters of the St. Louis bid for a MLS team. They let Don Garber know their feelings at the beginning of the draft, traded some shots with KC and showed up well, especially for a city without a team.
Here the Eads Brigade is letting "the Don" know their thoughts...


Part way through the draft, they stepped outside to play the media.


They were interviewed...

and photographed...


let them have their team Don, you won't regret it.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Observations from the draft...

Mo Johnston has the reputation as Trader Mo. There were plenty of trades proposed, but not much came of it. It was entertaining to watch Mo at the draft. He was constantly on the go talking to someone.


Here Mo is chatting with Steve Nicol.


I got to meet Ives at the draft. He sat in the front row of the media section and just about everyone who was anyone stopped by to chat with him…


Ives was the only person to talk to more people than Mo. He even talked to Mike…


Preki visited the Wizards table and chatted with Coach Zavagnin (take awhile to get used to that).


One of the best moments of the draft was when Richard Jata was selected by Chicago Fire. He was selected in the 4th round, 58th overall. Not a lot of players were actually in attendance, Generation Adidas players mostly. Richard Jata was there though, and he waited through until the end to hear his name called. He got up and gave a great speech. You could tell how happy he was. Jata gave everyone in the hall a great feeling and got a round of applause in return from just about everyone. Richard Jata is now officially my favorite Fire player. Here is Jata walking out to the media area.