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Seahawks fans prepare for opener with rally

Drea Park, vice president of the Whidbey Island Sea Hawkers, sits near the bar Friday night at Flyers Restaurant and Brewery for the Official Hometown Rally. The rally was one of 12 official rallies designated by the official booster club of the Seattle Seahawks.  - Photo by Kelly Pantoleon / Whidbey News-Times
Drea Park, vice president of the Whidbey Island Sea Hawkers, sits near the bar Friday night at Flyers Restaurant and Brewery for the Official Hometown Rally. The rally was one of 12 official rallies designated by the official booster club of the Seattle Seahawks.
— image credit: Photo by Kelly Pantoleon / Whidbey News-Times

When Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson was first drafted into the NFL, many people, including respected sports analysts, said he was too small to play pro football.

Tony Savoy, who runs the brewery side of Flyers Restaurant and Brewery, said he saw Wilson drafted by the Seahawks in the third round and thought the opposite.

“I was excited. Russell Wilson is such a smart player,” Savoy said. “He’s really good.”

Savoy was among about 200 people attending the an official Hometown Rally at Flyers Saturday night in preparation of the Seahawks’ season opener.

There was a line at 5 p.m., which is when the event started.

The rally, organized by the Whidbey Sea Hawkers, was one of 12 official rallies sponsored by the Sea Hawkers, the official booster club of the Seattle Seahawks.

The Whidbey branch of the club gained official recognition this past spring, a few months after a Super Bowl rally was held at Flyers.

The group previously held rallies at Deception Pass and Coupeville.

One member of the Whidbey group is Michelle Curry, who serves as treasurer.

Curry moved to Whidbey in 1981 because her father was in the Navy, and she’s been a Seahawks fan since.

“I love the Seahawks,” Curry said.

While Curry said she doesn’t make predictions, she said the team has a good shot of making it back to the Super Bowl.

“I think they’re good,” Curry said. “I have faith in our entire team.”

The Sea Hawkers Booster Club gave the Whidbey chapter several items to give as prizes: a Richard Sherman signed football, posters of the 2014-15 schedule, “12” buttons, and signs that read “I’m in” on one side and “12” on the other.

Because the prizes came from the organization, there were strict rules to follow in order to be entered to win. For example, a person had to be wearing some sort of Seahawks gear in order to be given a free raffle ticket.

The directions for the prizes and other parts of the rally have to follow the instructions that every other Official Hometown Rally does.

Local businesses also donated items for prizes, including balloon gifts and décor, gift certificates and “12” buttons.

The rally featured music played by DJ Dave Barber, who said he’s been a Seahawks fan since 1976.

One of the younger fans at the rally was McKenzie Meyer, a freshman attending Coupeville High School. She was draped in a “12” flag.

Also decked out in Seahawks gear was Drea Park, vice president of the Whidbey Sea Hawkers.

Park wore bright blue eye contacts, Seahawks socks, bracelets, hand-made necklaces, a beanie, a blue and green wig, sunglasses and a Lofa Tatupu jersey.

Tatupu played for the Seahawks in 2005 when the team went to the Super Bowl.

Park said she has been a Seahawks fan since 1993.

“It’s fun,” she said. “I enjoy hanging out with all my fellow 12s.

“It’s just like in the stadium. The atmosphere is electric.”

Savoy, who played football throughout high school, said he feels that same excitement and is ready for the NFL season to kick off Thursday with the Seahawks playing the Green Bay Packers.

“I can’t wait,” Savoy said. “I love football.”

Savoy said he’s been a Seahawks fan since 1992, when he moved to Washington state to play soccer at Skagit Valley College.

“It’s great to see people come out and support the team,” he said.

“I’m really happy the Seahawks chose Whidbey again.”

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