Red Bulls Mark 2012 Home Campaign in Style

Rafa Marquez was on hand Friday afternoon to flip the Empire State Building to Red Bulls colors

New York Red Bulls midfielder Rafa Marquez and President of Business Operations for the club, Chris Heck, lit the Empire State Building in Red Bulls’ colors Friday afternoon, signifying the official start of the Red Bulls’ 2012 home campaign.

Marquez will be playing in his first match of the 2012 season on Sunday. He will be looking to light up the midfield against the Colorado Rapids, one of five clubs to start the 2012 season with two wins.

Before Marquez flipped the lobby switch, Heck made a few opening remarks.

“It’s such a great honor to be here representing the New York Red Bulls, and representing New York’s soccer team,” he said. “We have the great opportunity to flip the switch to show the city of New York that our home opener is here.”

Heck noted the importance of representing one of the most diverse cities in the world.

“The Empire State Building is truly an iconic building, not only here in New York, but an international icon for so many years. We believe that we reflect that international spirit, that New York spirit with having the most diverse team in any sport in the entire world. We have over 34 nations represented between our players, coaches and front office. So this is a fitting start to our season and we are enthusiastic and excited to be a part of this great honor.”

After flipping the ceremonial switch to light the building, Marquez was presented with a model Empire State Building from the building’s staff.

The Tower Lights will be lit in white/red/white throughout the weekend, so be sure to take a glance wherever you are in the city.

The Empire State Building towers 1,454 feet above the New York City skyline. The “World’s Most Famous Office Building” was named America’s favorite building in a poll conducted by the American Institute of Architects. The building’s Observatory is the City’s No. 1 tourist destination. For more information on the Empire State Building, please visit www.esbnyc.com, www.facebook.com/EmpireStateBuilding, or @EmpireStateBldg.

For a schedule of the Tower Lights, visit http://www.esbnyc.com/current_events_tower_lights.asp.

The Red Bulls kick off against the Colorado Rapids Sunday at 4pm ET in what marks the start of the third season at Red Bull Arena. Tickets start as low as $20. For $25, fans can take part in the home opener Tweet-Up that includes all-you-can-eat hot dogs, a cash bar and a player meet and greet.

And of course, don't forget to keep an eye out for the special Thierry Henry 4 Packs of Red Bull for your chance to get two tickets and two scarves for just $50!