Minneapolis City SC, a local club that competes in the National Premier Soccer League (NPSL)’s North Conference has announced an off-the-field expansion:
The Crows, as they are known, will be opening a retail store in south Minneapolis this September.
The store is located at 2818 E 38th Street in Minneapolis.
“We are in growth mode right now,” said Dan Hoedeman, one of the club’s co-founders. “We believe--from the inquiries and traffic we get online and at games--that there is enough business to sustain a location, and also that having a place is going to be critical to building the community that we want to have. A stadium that we own is not in the budget right now, but this location is. It’s a retail front, sure. It’s also a place for special events, for member events, and for bringing people together...we believe that it will help to introduce people to the club and give us a halo of credibility.”
The Crows won’t be the only business in The Club Shop though. Stimulus Athletic, a uniform provider founded by former Minnesota United player Geison Moura, will be in the space as well.
Minneapolis City will hope to use that growth to build off of a successful 2018 season that included an undefeated regular season and championship.
But the regular season is short and the offseason long in local soccer. “Having this place, and making sure that we have the right activities/events at the store during the offseason, will make it all seem shorter,” said Hoedeman.
The Crows will also hope to benefit from the awareness that a brick-and-mortar storefront can bring. “We play seven or eight home games a summer and they’re easy to miss for new people given how packed Minnesota summers are,” said Hoedeman. “This gives us more dates for people who are interested in the club to come and check us out a little.”
The Club Shop’s grand opening will feature a full day of action on Saturday from 8:45am to 6:00pm. Minnesota soccer legends such as Alan Willey, Steve Litt, Alan Merrick and Pablo Campos will be on hand.
After only a few years of existence, this expansion reflects the success that Minneapolis City—and, by extension, local soccer—is enjoying in Minnesota. “When we launched we were told by an old school soccer fan in town that we wouldn’t last two years,” recalled Hoedeman. “But that was then. Now, we’re at the place where we aren’t just surviving but we’re opening a store. The end game though is survival. We want to reach a point of comfortable sustainability for the club and all its operations, current and future. The right footprint, maximizing commercial opportunities, growing until we reach scale, those are things that will help us achieve things like our women’s team, a greater community impact, and longevity. Hopefully this enables that.”