clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Colorado Rapids Have a Blue Secondary Kit Again. It’s supporting Mental Health.

Local artist Pat Milbery designed the “New Day” kit and it hits home for Colorado in so many ways.

Cole Bassett wearing the “New Day” secondary kit in front of the Pat Milbery mural at DICK’s Sporting Goods Park.
Colorado Rapids

The Colorado Rapids have released their new secondary kit for the 2023-24 MLS seasons. Named the “New Day” kit, it’s a first for the club and MLS’s partnership with Adidas in more ways than one. Just like the Class 5 kit, it’s got a mission behind it that hits very close to home.

The kit was designed by local street artist Pat Milbery, who’s been around the club before. Jack Price and Edgar Castillo were unveiled in front of one his murals downtown off Park Avenue West. Milbery did the mural on the northeast wall of DICK’s Sporting Goods Park in 2022 for Pride Night.

The symbolism behind the kit resonated with the club and artist as well. Nearly one in five Coloradans lives with a mental health condition. The state ranks last in the country in access to care relative to the prevalence of mental illness among its population. Suicide is the leading cause of death for 15-to-24-year-olds in the state.

The Rapids have partnered with Mental Health Colorado (MHC) and UCHealth to spread awareness and reduce stigma around mental health. The club will be donating $25,000 to nonprofits serving mental health needs in the state.

“In our drive to be the heartbeat of sport in Colorado, we are proud to work with a local artist in Pat Milbery on this kit launch, and even more importantly, to raise awareness and help tackle a significant issue facing our community as a whole,” said Wayne Brant, Colorado Rapids Sr. Vice President of Business Operations.

“With the New Day Kit, we see an opportunity to once again connect directly with our state by using Colorado’s stunning landscape as the inspiration for the jersey, while working with our local partners to bring attention to a mental health crisis that effects so many. We hope this can help change the perception around a topic that is affecting our friends, families and neighbors, and help shine light on a pathway to a brighter, new day.”

“This is the first time in the history of MLS that a team has partnered with an artist to allow their jersey to be a canvas. The Rapids are true pioneers in this sense because they appreciate art and the power it has to tell a bigger story. I’m so honored they chose me to help be a part of this story because this is way bigger than soccer—it’s a story about our deep love and care for the health and well-being of our Colorado community,” said Milbery.

Sunsets and sunrises are an iconic backdrop at DICK’s, especially for evening games in the middle of the summer. Club Creative Director Jordan Rothrock did a few mock drafts, but nothing seemed to fit. That’s where Milbery came in.

The Rapids have wanted to bring back a blue kit for some time now. The different tones of blue and geometric straight lines are a signature of Milbery’s art as well. The heart on the jock tag is another theme of his work. He made a special one with dozens of iterations specifically for the Rapids.

“The first time Cole [Bassett] saw the kit, he said ‘god I’ve been waiting for a blue kit again.’ We went with the sunset theme,” Rapids Creative Director Jordan Rothrock told Burgundy Wave. “There’s a very big tease in the mural that [Pat Milbery] did for Pride Night [in 2022].”

The mural will remain the same for 2023.

“It’s almost sunrays coming out of the crest. The hits of other colors accent that. It still needed to be a competitive jersey. Adidas wants you to take chances but they also want you to be realistic. When we sent that scarf to Ruffneck, they said ‘that’s the most colorful scarf we’ve ever had,’” added Rothrock.

“If you break it down, it’s blue, yellow, and red, which is the Colorado Flag. It’s saturated, but at the end of the day this is a Colorado kit. It’s based off the flag, the sunset, and Pat.”

That’s the main reason the kit at a distance just light blue. The scarf, the accents, and every stuff to come will be sunset themed. The club wanted a blue kit again and there were limitations due to manufacturing and competition needs.

The shorts and the socks are a similar tone of blue with red and yellow sunset accents throughout, including the Adidas stripe down the side of the shorts. The letters and numbers on the back of the shirt will be the darkest of the blues seen on the front of the shirt.

The kit will be available for purchase at, and Fans in the Denver area can bring their New Day jersey to the Rapids’ Season Kickoff Party on March 1 for free name and number customization. Multicolor numbering and lettering with be available as well, not just the dark blue.

Perhaps the club will wear these for one home game this year like they did the Class 5 kit last year.

As someone who lives with depression and has had two serious episodes of self harm, this hits home in so many ways. The national suicide prevention lifeline is 988. DMs on my personal and Burgundy Wave’s twitter accounts are open. It’s ok to not be ok and to ask for help. It can be a new day.