Best Kid's Thrill

CenturyLink Field's "Inflate-a-Pitch"

In the plaza north of CenturyLink Field, before each Sounders home game, is set up what I for lack of a better term call the "Inflate-a-Pitch": a roughly 15-by-40-foot inflatable pen (basically a swimming pool with no bottom) into which kids are let, six at a time, for energetic three-minute matches—or bouts—of soccer. They range in age from preteens who have obviously been playing a while to indefatigable post-toddlers not even half as tall (but just as badass), running around at random like volatile gas molecules, giving it their full three. Parents stand outside recording it all on their smartphones, but with an admirable minimum of buttinsky coaching. One lesson these kids could teach the pros: There's no flopping. GAVIN BORCHERT CenturyLink Field, 800 Occidental Ave. S., soundersfc.com

 
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