FLAGS, BANNERS & SCARVES of the NJB
Part of the soccer experience is going to the stadium and seeing all of the banners, flags & scarves being displayed and waved in the stands. The NJB is perhaps most well-known for providing the game with the best damn banners, the most creative scarves & the biggest damn flags in the land. Here you can find information on all of our infamous creations and finds.
Asteriks at the end of a descripition denotes a contributed photo. Photos have been contributed from Yellow Card Journalism and ussoccerfan.com with their permission. Look in the status bar for the name of the photograper and/or contributing source.
**All Scarves were made by www.store4fans.com**
**All Scarves were made by www.store4fans.com**
After watching the Euro 2000 Championships and seeing all the big flags that each country had, Ed decided it was about time that the US had some big flags of their own. BUT where do you find something that big? EBAY of course. Within a week, Ed was able to find a 20x30ft flag that was affordable and in his price range. You can't go wrong with a flag of that size for only $150 including shipping. The flag made its debut at the first home WCQ of the 2002 campaign and quickly became known as the "NJB Flag." It made it to every home WCQ game before its bigger brother came around. Since the BAF's arrival, the Baby has become a road warrior making trips to Mexico, T&T, Ireland & Korea for the World Cup. Returning from Korea in beat up shape, the flag had seen better days. Like Lassie, it can be replaced and Ed was fortunate enough to find another 20 x 30ft US flag and the original Baby was then donated to the Soccer Hall of Fame in Oneita, NY. The 'new' Baby has picked up where the old one left off, traveling to home and road games, most notably Mexico City and the World Cup in Germany.
Ed wasn't satsified with the Baby flag. At MLS CUP '00, there was a huge flag that was carried out on the field by the local Marines. It was HUGE. Ed wanted a flag that big. Going back to trusty ebay, Ed was again lucky enough to find such a flag. An enormous 30 x 60ft US flag for $800. A steal considering that new ones of that size go for $1500 and up. Knowing he could count on fellow National team fans' Ed drew up a plan and posted it on BigSoccer.com. Within a week Ed had combined pledges totaling over $900 from over 25 people. Ed eventually won the bid for the flag and all but one person sent in their money. The flag was shipped out to Kansas City and made a very successful debut vs Costa Rica and can be found in the stands of almost every home World Cup Qualifier the USA has played since then.
The showpiece of the NJB and the banner that started the whole NJB idea back in 97. The banner accompanied us on every trip we would make to see the US play until June of 2005 when the bastards at Real Salt Lake took our banner down and allowed some schmuck to walk off with it. This was our first attempt at making a banner, this banner was hand sketched in pencil by Rob and is mainly colored by Permanent Markers. A paint pen was used for the white spots and a colored pencil for the brown in the state. Sleeves were sewn into the bottom to allow for metal rods to be inserted to weigh down the banner. Accolades: Over 25 members of the nation team have signed the banner including Tab Ramos, John Harkes, Claudio Reyna & Alexi Lalas. The banner has also appeared in the VfL Wolfsburg Goal magazine 4/01/00 vs Bayern München.
Back in 98, this banner idea seemed like a sure thing. Mike Petke was a real promising rookie and look destined to play for the national team, but for whatever reason over the years, Bruce Arena never really gave Petke too much of a chance. Again Rob hand sketched the banner. Learning from our first banner, however, we decided to use cloth paint instead of using permant markers which bled when it rained. Little did we know that the paint ran too.... Accolades: Signed by Petke whose response was "Wow" when he saw the banner. Banner was made in one night as we worked round the clock to get ready for the first game where Ed bleached his hair to look like Petke.
Rob has many things in common with Billy Walsh. Tall, Goofy-looking, lives in NJ, went to Rutgers...and Billy gave Ed his jersey... so making a banner for him made perfect sense. Straying from our other banner attempts and learning from our mistakes, this banner is made strictly of cloth. Rob layed out the banner design using strands of string, then drew all the pieces on the different color cloths. We cut out the pieces and then using iron-on tranfer paper and a bit of cloth glue applied to the banner. Accolades: Signed by Billy Walsh. Earned NJB an invitation in the prestigous Walsh Cup Tournament in '99 and a return visit in '01 Tourney.Back to Top
The tragedy of September 11th effected us all. The NJB did their part with Dimitri calling z100 to get the BAF hung on a building in Newark. But that wasn't enough. With the US vs Jamaica World Cup Qualifier being the first sporting event for the USA since the sad events, we wanted to do more. Ed printed out lyrics to God Bless America and distributed to fans, asking them to sing it at the 9:11 mark. Dimitri wanted to make a banner to show his support. This banner was put together very quickly with a white sheet and some black spray paint. Accolades: It was never intended to b a work of art or impress anyone. The statement speaks for itself.
The Sparta Metro Firm was born leading up to the 2007 season, inspired by the Metro Death Squad and other small, semi-joke groups inside of the ESC. We originally had a more basic banner that is highly visible in match photos from Metro games in the 2007 season, but time took its toll and the need arose to create a newer, more durable version for 2008. We wanted it to be both bigger and more visually appealing, so we included large wording and vivid colors along with a 300 comic book inspired Spartan figure, to let other teams and supporters know we don't mess around. The banner is made of thick cloth, sewn together excellently by Kevin's aunt, and we used house paint to color in the banner based on recommendations from Polish Pete. It was created about two days before the season's home opener in a total rush, because SMF works well under pressure. Accolades: Now, everyone knows where Sparta is ...or at least has heard of it.
Perhaps its because our club has done nothing but to disappoint us, perhaps its because we are true patriots, whatever the reason the ESC has passion second to none when it comes to supporting the US National Team. After the immense success of the second SMF banner, the SMF was asked to create a new ESC banner, for the US vs Argentina Friendly 6/8/08 at Giant's Stadium, with a design indicative of both the United States as a whole and the NY-NJ area. The Statue of Liberty was a perfect fit. To make it a little more soccer-centric, we gave Lady Liberty a big old soccer ball to hold on, repping the sport's growth in the country. We once again used house paint and thick cloth as materials for the banner, wanting it to be durable and long lasting. We were extremely disappointed to find out at the game that US Soccer wasn't letting anyone hang banners over advertisements they had set up for US Soccer.com. We had worked especially hard in the days leading up to the game to make the flag, but even though it has yet to debut at a USA game because of that, we have a nice looking flag that will eventually get its share of caps for the USA. Accolades: One of best US banners ever made!Back to Top
The first ever NJB scarf was created using the original SA template back in the day where custom text could be added under the Sam's Army on the one side. Shortly after creating our own t-shirts, Rob & Ed designed an exclusive two-sided NJB scarf. One side showcasing the United States with NJB lettering on the ends flanked by 3 stars, represting NJ as the 3rd state to join the Union. The other side for the North Jersey Brigade with the northern NJ map standing out in blue. We used the same provider for the scarves as SA and the scarves were rather heavy and long, not the best for the summer and those with short arms. In 2006, we found another provider which made their scarves shorter and thinner. We were a little late on getting the order in for the World Cup, so we had to have the scarves shipped to Germany and we had to lug around 50 scarves with us in Deutschland.
Heading towards South Africa, we wanted to make a new scarf that highlighted our state's importance in both US and US Soccer history. It took alot of tinkering and we learned about a scarf's max color/thread count in the process but the result may be our best scarf produced to date. The New Jersey side has the state flag crest on one end and a silohute of Washington Crossing the Delware on the other. The state of New Jersey in the middle is surrounded by 13 stars representing it as one of the original 13 colonies. There are three gold stars signifying the fact that New Jersey was the Third State to ratify the Constitution and join the Union. The United States side pays homage to all the US Soccer greats who have hailed from the Garden State. Starting with the early generation of West Hudson stars on the left side of the scarf ending with the latest group on the right who represented NJ proud in the 2010 World Cup.
Here are all the players listed on the scarf with Wiki links to info about them:
Tom Florie | John Harkes | Tab Ramos | Tim Howard
A few members of the NJB are also members of the Scots-American Club in Kearny and have been avid Rangers Supporters since birth. This scarf came about as a means for the die-hard Kearny club to express their support in a way that other Rangers North American supporters clubs had not. It became an instant classic when Rangers Manager, Walter Smith, stood behind it during a photograph with the club. The edges of each side are shown to have the Rangers Football Club logo as well as the Scots-American RSC logo. The back is adorned with the Rangers blue with highlights of red and white, like the jersey itself. In the middle you have the supporter’s club name and location. On the reverse you have Rangers along with the five stars, symbolizing their 50+ league titles won, as well as the common fan cry of “We are the people.”
This scarf was meant to bridge the gap between the Metro and the Red Bulls. One side pointing to the new chapter of the franchise with Bruce Arena at the helm with the other side remembring the futility of the past 10 years of Metro and the carasoul of coaches we had in the span Above the coaches, the familiar phrase "Those whose forget the past are doomed to repeat it," reminds us that we can't keep doing the same old if this team wants to succeed..... a year later, Bruce Arena was fired. The scarf was very successful and Dimitri sold out of his first run and a second order had to be placed. Watch any game and you can see these scarves being shown proudly up in the air of Section 101.
The Empire Supporters Club,which almost every member of the NJB is a part of, hadn't had a new scarf for a few years and based on the success and kick ass design of his Metro Past/Present scarf, Dimitri was asked by the club to design a new scarf. Armed with the newly designed ESC logos, an arsenal of songs to choose lines from, the New York City skyline and familiar ESC references like the Empire State Building and Section 101, Dimitri made easy work of this one. Here is his creation which the ESC easily sold out of in their intial order of 100.
We all like drinking. Yes even Rob now too!. Some of us though go a little too far every once in a while. There are normally a few people this happens to each RB Metro home game and it normally amounts to high comedy, as long as nobody is 'going home in a Jersey Ambulance.' During the 2007 season, certain ESC memembers began giving out a "Drunk of the Week" award. It gained momentum and being the former Fan of the Year that he is, Binks stepped up and enlisted Dimitri's help in creating a material award for each week's winner. He had enough scarves created for each home game and after an informal vote on the Empire Supporters Club Message board, the scarf is given to the winner. Binks didn't do it for money, he did for the love of his Club and Fans.*
With the success of the inaugural Drunk of the Week scarf, it was decided it would become a yearly tradition. In these tough economic times, the money tree is a little bare so Binks had help from about 15 of his fellow Metro fans who donated the funds for the scarf. The scarf still shows respect to the 2007 legend and celebrates the 2008 winner with a burning stroller on one of the sides reminding us how & why he won. Unfortunately or fortunately, this tradition ended with the opening of Red Bull Arena in 2010.
* And because he has a money tree.