World Cup Parties at Dan's Silverleaf Wed Live Music and Denton-Style Patriotism
"Do you wanna hear some Slayer?" a very disappointed Craig Welch says, queuing up the next track at his turntable set-up. Pumping his fists, palm up (indicative of frustration), Welch is engrossed deep into a combination of disappointment of the U.S.-Portugal game result and general agreement with the heavy metal reverberations echoing throughout Dan's Silverleaf on this particular Sunday night.
Ed Steele Crowds cheering inside the bar at Dan's Silverleaf during the U.S.-Portugal game on Sunday
Every four years, various media outlets seem to pander to the idea that we Americans are mere World Cup novices, continually running beginner's guides a la informative and introductory articles outlining the most epic sporting event this side of the Olympics. And that may be true to some extent: we are generally a nation of football, not futbol, enthusiasts. However, the near-capacity scene at Dan's proved this is not entirely the case.
For the duration of the remaining weeks of the World Cup, Dan's will continue to host free watching parties, which includes live music and an unabashed love for soccer revelry amongst your U.S.-flag-toting peers.
"People believe in this shit," Welch says, still wallowing in disbelief over the last seconds of the heartbreaking draw that Portugal managed to sweep away from what was almost an assured U.S. win with a very literal last-minute goal.
"Four years ago, when the US played Ghana, it was sort of like this. But today was special."
The soccer tournament watch parties at this beloved Denton venue incorporate these two complimentary forms of cherished entertainment pastimes quite favorably. Not only are you taking part in arguably the most-watched televised events on earth, but local musicians play a few sets in between. Not bad for the free price of admission.
The World Cup is celebrated in such ways all over the world, and the energy within the humble walls at Dan's reveal that American fans aren't necessarily always jumping in on the bandwagon of whatever current sports championship is happening. These fans were admirably engaged in every moment of action. Not a far cry from the usual scene of your average sports bar. Yet this type of environment yields a more "homey" vibe.
It's more or less a grandiose version of attending a pay-per-view event party at the neighbor's house who's the only one willing to spring a few bucks for the good of the rest of the block. And they invited their musician friends from work over to play a few crowd-friendly ditties in the backyard.