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Yesterday the US Women’s National Soccer Team popped over to President’s Park during a #FindYourPark + #SheBelieves youth soccer clinic to do a little Q+A with local kids from Boys & Girls Club and DC Scores, as well as to sign autographs, take selfies, and (perhaps most importantly) jump into some laid-back scrimmage sessions with pint-sized opponents. As you can imagine, the aforementioned youth were out-of-their-minds excited (as was I, though at age twenty-seven, I’d like to think I concealed it semi-better than they did), and I can pretty much guarantee that all of those children have nixed the Frozen Halloween costumes, instead opting to trick-or-treat as Carli Lloyd, Hope Solo, Abby Wambach and/or all of the other Women’s World Cup 2015 winners. (And if that is the case, please feel free to swing by my apartment in Brooklyn // I will give you so many candy bars and no raisins, I mean it!)

Now, it would have been impressive for the USWNT to make this kind of appearance on ANY given day, let alone JUST ONE after playing (and beating) Brazil in Orlando, FL as part of their post-World Cup Victory Tour…seriously, I go to Trader Joe’s on a Sunday afternoon and I’m incapacitated for at least forty-eight hours, so can you even imagine playing a major soccer match, traveling to DC from Florida the next day, and then spending some quality time with kids? (Like, absolutely no offense to kids, but I think even they can probably appreciate the level of devotion involved here.) But that’s just what they do! So major props to all of the players for being in such great spirits, and for leaving an entire field full of children with gigantic smiles on their faces and (probably) big dreams a’ brewin’. (Note: I have never said “a’ brewin'” before in my whole life, nor do I plan to do it ever again, but it sounded nice and also like something a sailor witch might say, so I said it.)

If you’re going, “But who was there SPECIFICALLY, Megan?!” then I say unto you “All of the USWNT players you know and love, basically!” Pinoe was heading up the clinic when I arrived (and talking about the National Park Service and National Park Foundation’s Find Your Park/Encuentra Tu Parque movement, which you can learn more about HERE), and the others filed in not too long afterwards; this included DC’s own Ashlyn Harris and Ali Krieger (both play for the Washington Spirit), recently-retired Christie Rampone, Shannon Boxx, Lori Chalupny and Lauren Holiday, previously mentioned Carli Lloyd // Hope Solo // Abby Wambach, plus Sydney Leroux, Tobin Heath, Becky Sauerbrunn, Whitney Engen, Kelley O’Hara, HAO, Christen Press, Amy Rodriguez, Alex Morgan, Alyssa Naeher, Julie Johnston, Morgan Brian, Meghan Klingenberg…like, literally ALL OF THEM. And also Jill! Jill came too. (That’s code for COACH JILL ELLIS, GOD DO I HAVE TO EXPLAIN EVERYTHING TO YOU?!)

I realize that the previous paragraph may have filled you with infinite regret that you did not sense the presence of the USWNT so nearby yesterday // in the event you are feeling bummed out for having missed all of this jovial action, please enjoy BYT’s consolation prize in the form of:

  • This video in which I talked to Ali Krieger about youth outreach and (obviously) which DC restaurants she likes for dinner (shout-out Georgetown Waterfront, Rasika, Matchbox ‘n Founding Farmers) // PS sorry it is not so fancy but MY MAC IS IN BROOKLYN AND I AM IN VIRGINIA AND IT IS NOT MY FAULT:
  • AND some recap photos RIGHT HERE, RIGHT NOW:

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