Caps, Wizards set dates for 1st home games with fans

The company that runs the Washington Capitals and Washington Wizards has announced the first game for each team that will be held in front of fans.

Monumental Sports and Entertainment said in a statement Monday that fans would be admitted to the Capital One Arena for the Wizards’ game against the Golden State Warriors Wednesday, April 21, and the Capitals’ game against the New York Islanders Tuesday, April 27.

Mayor Muriel Bowser’s office, the Department of Health and the District’s Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency approved the teams’ request to open the arena at 10% capacity — about 2,100 fans.

“Our fans fuel everything our players and teams accomplish, and they have been deeply missed,” said Ted Leonsis, the owner of both teams and CEO of Monumental Sports and Entertainment. “Our country has been through great stress over the past year, and it has taken a mental toll on all of us, but we know that sports are a great healer.”

“Hundreds of pre-selected frontline workers” will be invited to the games, Monumental said in the statement. After that, season ticket holders will get first crack at the tickets; any information on public access to tickets is forthcoming, the teams said.

A host of safety rules are in place for fans returning to the arena. Some of the major ones:

  • Face masks (not gaiters or face shields) are required for everyone over age 2 unless you’re eating or drinking. They’ll be provided if you don’t have one.
  • All tickets will be electronic.
  • Tickets will be sold in pods of up to four; to maintain social distancing, seating will be staggered around the arena and no aisle seats will be sold. This means that if you’re a season ticket holder, you might not get your regular seat.
  • All food at the concession stands will be packaged and meant to be taken back to your seat. There’s no standing in the concourse.

More information on the rules, as well as ways to get tickets, is on Monumental’s website.

“We thank Mayor Bowser and her team for approving our vigorous health and safety plan so that some of our passionate Caps and Wizards fans may gather — with the first games being attended by some of our incredible first responders and frontline COVID-19 workers,” Leonsis said.

Rick Massimo

Rick Massimo came to WTOP, and to Washington, in 2012 after having lived in Providence, R.I., since he was a child. He went to George Washington University as an undergraduate and is regularly surprised at the changes to the city since that faraway time.

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