Hopeful crowds pack Commanders training camp on first day of public attendance: ‘Different vibe’

'I don't have a scam artist as an owner anymore,' one fan tells WTOP's John Domen

Thursday marked the first day the public could attend the Washington Commanders’ training camp at the team’s Ashburn, Virginia, facilities. A large crowd of hopeful fans showed up to get a glimpse of the team’s new roster — and the team’s new owners.

(If you’re planning to check out training camp yourself, here’s everything you need to know.)

WTOP Sports Director George Wallace spent some time talking to fans and members of the team.

As new team owner Josh Harris arrived with his business partners Mitchell Rales and Mark Ein around 9:20 a.m., attendees cheered and flocked for autographs, with some chanting, “Thank you, Josh.”

Many fans WTOP spoke with described a new energy surrounding the team.

“There’s a different vibe. You can feel it’s very positive,” said Brandy Hatcher, of Falls Church, Virginia.

James Lindsay, who lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, stopped in St. Mary’s County to see his parents and pick up his dad to visit Ashburn. “We’re not … a laughingstock of the league anymore,” he said.

Arabia Tiller, of Upper Marlboro, Maryland, came with her son and her mom to check out the training camp. “I’m a native Washingtonian and I stand by my Commanders,” she said.

Tiller’s mom, Denise Jackson, is one of the fans who would like to see the team jettison the Commanders name. But in any case, “I’m here to support them because I believe in them, and I think we’re gonna do great things especially under the new ownership,” she said.

Shuttle buses from Dulles Town Center brought fans to Commanders Park every 10 minutes. The first group arrived shortly after 7:45 a.m.

Gates opened at 8 a.m. Practice started at 9 a.m.

Tickets are free on SeatGeek.


CLICK IMAGE TO ENLARGE: A map of the training camp. (Courtesy Washington Commanders)


  • Bring ice and water
  • Wear sunscreen or a hat
  • Bring a comfortable camping chair or picnic blanket
  • Bring money for the food trucks


  • Bring outside food or alcohol
  • Bring video cameras or record during plays

WTOP’s John Domen, Kate Corliss and Jack Moore contributed to this report.

Ciara Wells

Ciara Wells is the Evening Digital Editor at WTOP. She is a graduate of American University where she studied journalism and Spanish. Before joining WTOP, she was the opinion team editor at a student publication and a content specialist at an HBCU in Detroit.

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