DC bars allowed to stay open 24 hours for Women’s World Cup

EDITOR’S NOTE: This story has been changed to reflect the correct dates for the knockout games in the Women’s World Cup. 

D.C. bars will be allowed to stay open for 24 hours for a month this summer to accommodate the Women’s World Cup, thanks to an emergency bill passed by the D.C. Council.

The 2023 Women’s World Cup Emergency Amendment Act of 2023 was proposed by Council member Kenyan McDuffie earlier this month and is similar to the emergency legislation passed to accommodate the Men’s World Cup last summer. It is currently pending the mayor’s approval.

The emergency amendment will be in effect from July 20 through the finals on Aug. 20. Alcohol will be available for sale around the clock, except between 4 a.m. and 6 a.m. Participating bars must pay a registration fee of $100 and alert the D.C. police department of their intent to participate in extended hours by July 17, three days before the tournament starts.

The women’s tournament will take place in nine cities and 10 stadiums across New Zealand and Australia, meaning matches will have a significant time difference for viewers on the east coast: Auckland is 16 hours ahead, Sydney is 14 hours ahead and Perth is 12 hours ahead. The bulk of games will kick off between 2 a.m. and 7 a.m. throughout the monthlong tournament.

Key Matches

Co-host nation New Zealand opens the tournament when it hosts Norway in Auckland on Thursday, July 20 at 3 a.m. EDT — United States East Coast time. Co-host nation Australia opens against Republic of Ireland in Sydney three hours later at 6 a.m.

The United States Women’s National Team begins its title defense and quest for its fifth World Cup when its begins Group E play on Friday, July 21 against Vietnam in Auckland at 9 p.m. EDT. The team continues group play against the Netherlands on Wednesday, July 26 at 9 p.m., then again on Tuesday, Aug. 1 when it takes on Portugal at 3 a.m. EDT.

If the USWNT wins Group E as expected, it’ll play the second winner of Group G (Sweden, South Africa, Italy and Argentina) on Saturday, Aug. 5 at 10 p.m. If they advance as the second seed of Group E, they’ll play the winner of Group G at 5 a.m. on Sunday, Aug. 6.

According to FIFA, the quarterfinals are on Friday and Saturday, Aug. 11 and 12, and the semifinals on Tuesday and Wednesday, Aug. 15 and 16. Times for the knockout games are subject to change.

The finals will be on Sunday, Aug. 20 at 6 a.m. EDT.

Official USWNT Bar

Astro Beer Hall in downtown D.C. is the home bar for the American Outlaws D.C. Chapter and was the official bar of the U.S. Men’s National Team last summer.

As of Tuesday, they said they are “expecting large crowds” for the women’s tournament and are looking to partner with the American Outlaws again this summer, but are currently “waiting on word from the mayor” before they plan to be open for early morning games. They said they’ll be showing games with sound when they are open.

David Andrews

No stranger to local news, David Andrews has contributed to DCist, Greater Greater Washington and was fellow at Washingtonian Magazine. He worked as a photo/videographer for University of Maryland's Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center.

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