Tifo display in Section 8 at the Chicago Fire 2013 home opener last night. “Project Rise” cost supporters $2,000 to produce, created over eight build sessions lasting over 70 hours in total (cool time lapse video of the banner painting here and here).

Photos from multiple sources, via project co-ordinator Eric Kekeis (@s8coperations)

Bulgarian Hristo Stoichkov, a legend of the international game and a Fire player 2000-2002, returned to Chicago just for the celebration, as did Fire originals Ante Razov, Peter Nowak, Chris Armas, Zach Thornton and Diego Gutierrez. Hometown hero Brian McBride of Arlington Heights posed for countless photos. Much of the expansion Montreal Impact coaching staff was there, led by former Fire midfielder Jesse Marsch, now the Impact coach, and assistants Mike Sorber, Denis Hamlett and Impact scout Lubos Kubik, each with a Fire connection. Even former Fire midfielder Justin Mapp, a current Impact player, was there, mingling with fans along with most of the current Fire players, while a video of the Fire’s 1998 MLS Cup win played on the big screen.