Si.com’s Inside Baseball calls presidents race a conspiracy

Today over at SI.com, Inside Baseball’s Joe Lemire throws a nod to LetTeddyWin.com, calling the Washington Nationals presidents race an “apparent conspiracy,” and quotes Nationals pitcher Joel Hanrahan, who predicts that Teddy Roosevelt will never win: “No, never. Absolutely not. I gave up watching that race. I can’t take it any more. At least give me an effort, will you?”

The “Spring Postcard” column is a worthy read for Nationals fans, most notably for Lemire’s account of Assistant General Manager Mike Rizzo’s week in the Dominican Republic.

New look for Nationals mascot Screech

Washington Nationals mascot Screech on 70s night at Nationals ParkThe Washington Nationals will unveil a “new look” for their mascot Screech this coming Monday, March 2, at ESPN Zone in Washington, DC. In-game host Clint Kouhry and members of the Nat Pack will be on hand for the unveiling.

If Screech seems a bit young to be getting a facelift, perhaps it’s because he is so clearly at the bottom of the pecking order in terms of Nationals mascot fan-favorites, with Teddy Roosevelt, of course, at the top of the pack. For my money, it’s going to take a lot more than a facelift to boost favor for Screech, who as judge of the Presidents Race, has disqualified Teddy Roosevelt a few too many times.

The Nationals announced today that Screech will make a variety of appearances during March to show off his “fresh-feathered look” before the start of the 2009 baseball season. Monday’s 1:00pm unveiling will be open to the public.

Billy Joel and Elton John to perform at Nationals Park in Washington DC this summer

As promised last week, the Washington Nationals announced today that the first-ever rock concert at Nationals Park will be a blockbuster.

Bill Joel and Elton John will perform at Nationals ParkBill Joel and Elton John will give a joint concert at Nationals Park on Saturday, July 11, at 7:30pm, as part of their Face to Face tour.

According to the Nationals, John and Joel “will open the concert together with a series of duets, playing twin pianos and trading vocals. Each artist will then perform a set with their own band. The grand finale reunites the two at center stage with their supporting musicians for a closing encore.”

Tickets go on sale on Saturday, February 28 at 10 a.m. through Tickets.com.

Nationals Promotion / Giveaway Schedule for 2009

The Washington Nationals today announced that almost all 2009 individual game tickets will go on sale Tuesday, March 3, and revealed the Nationals Park game day promotion/giveaway schedule for 2009.

In addition to the known dates and giveaways listed below, the “popular post-game events” such as Friday Night Fireworks and Sunday Kids Run the Bases will be back, but Saturday night movies were not mentioned.

2009 Washington Nationals Promotional/Giveaway Schedule

Mon 4/13 Opening Day Hat (first 20,000 fans)
Wed 4/15 Jackie Robinson Day
Sat 4/18 Magnetic Schedule/Frame/Car Magnet (first 20,000 fans)
Tue 4/21 T-Shirt Tuesday (first 10,000 fans)
Sat 5/2 Latino Heritage Day / Los Nacionales T-Shirt (first 20,000 fans)
Tue 5/5 T-Shirt Tuesday (first 10,000 fans)
Sun 5/17 Kids Drawstring Backpack (first 10,000 kids 12 & under)
Tue 5/19 T-Shirt Tuesday (first 10,000 fans)
Sat 5/23 Nationals Cap (first 20,000 fans)
Sun 5/24 Kids Jersey (first 10,000 kids 12 & under)
Tues 6/2 T-Shirt Tuesday (first 10,000 fans)
Fri 6/5 Black Heritage Night
Tue 6/9 T-Shirt Tuesday (first 10,000 fans)
Fri 6/19 Beach Bash / Beach Towel (first 10,000 21 & older)
Sun 6/21 Fathers Day / Gym Bag (first 10,000 18 & older)
Tue 6/23 T-Shirt Tuesday (first 10,000 fans)
Sat 7/4 Mini U.S. Flags (first 20,000 fans)
Sun 7/19 Kids Insulated Lunch Bag (first 10,000 kids 12 & under)
Tue 7/21 T-Shirt Tuesday (first 10,000 fans)
Sat 7/25 Eco-Friendly Tote Bag (first 20,000 fans)
Tue 8/4 T-Shirt Tuesday (first 10,000 fans)
Sat 8/8 Bobblehead TBD (first 15,000 fans)
Tue 8/18 T-Shirt Tuesday (first 10,000 fans)
Sat 8/22 Bobblehead TBD (first 15,000 fans)
Sun 9/6 Kids Run the Show
Tue 9/8 T-Shirt Tuesday (first 10,000 fans)
Tue 9/22 T-Shirt Tuesday (first 10,000 fans)
Sat 9/26 Gospel Music Fest Post-Game Concert
Mon 9/28 Team Photo (first 20,000 fans)
Tue 9/29 T-Shirt Tuesday (first 10,000 fans)
Wed 9/30 Fan Appreciation Day (giveaways TBD to 1st 20,000 fans)

Tickets to the highly-anticipated interleague series vs. the Boston Red Sox on June 23, 24 and 25 will not be made available on March 3 along with other series. The Nationals will be holding back those tickets until on or about the 1st of April in an attempt to sell more season ticket packages. When those individual tickets to go on sale, they will be available online only.

Nationals Park to host concerts in 2009

The Washington Nationals have scheduled a press conference for Monday in which they will unveil “Washington, D.C.’s biggest summer concert and
first-ever musical performance at Nationals Park.” Exciting news for the city and for the team. The Nats crew unfortunately needs more experience handling sold-out crowds, and this should expose more people to our great new ballpark, and how easy it is to get there.

Video from Monday’s presidents race on ice skates

From YouTube member dcfd3694 comes this terrific video of the Presidents Day presidents race on ice skates at Nassau Coliseum.

[Youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rt1_dkVdV_0]

The chaotic two-lap race featured two knock-downs of Teddy, who scuffled not only with Abe Lincoln but with Thomas Jefferson as well, before cheating and cutting across the ice. You have to give credit to Teddy. Despite falling and fighting, he gave it his all and almost caught George Washington at the finish line.

A great addition to the presidents race videos page to kick off 2009.

Presidents race on ice skates with predictable results

The first presidents race of 2009 took place today in the most unlikely of places — New York’s Nassau Coliseum. Billed as “Kids Day” by the host New York Islanders of the National Hockey League, the Coliseum was host to mascots from around the country for today’s game vs. the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Washington Nationals racing president Teddy Roosevelt hits the iceIt being Presidents Day, our own Nationals racing presidents made the trek up north to pose with fans for pre-game photos and autographs. The “main attraction” for Kids Day was saved for the second intermission, when George, Tom, Abe, and Teddy took to the ice for their first-ever presidents race on skates.

NHL.com has the full play-by-play of the race, plus a terrific photo gallery of all the day’s festivities. Of course, with hockey sticks in hand, it should surprise no one that Abe and Teddy scuffled, with Teddy getting knocked to the ice. Ouch.

Photo courtesy of NHL.com.

Presidents Race on ice tomorrow following Presidents Day weekend auditions

A record number of contestants showed up at Nationals Park today for what has quickly become an annual Presidents Day weekend ritual in Washington, DC — the Washington Nationals presidents race auditions.

Seventy finalists — 20 more than the previous year — were invited to compete for the approximately 20 open spots on the Nationals’ mascot team.

As was the case at last year’s auditions, Teddy Roosevelt failed to make an appearance (he is “in training” for the upcoming season, says Nationals Entertainment Coordinator Tom Davis), so the finalists took turns racing and performing as George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Abraham Lincoln. As always, SBF at the Nats320 Blog has a fantastic recap of the days activities, along with more photos. There was a nice video story over at WLJA News, and the following from WTOP News and The Washington Times, respectively:

[YouTube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b8kRyzTTG-4]

Lost in the excitement over today’s auditions has been the news that tomorrow, Presidents Day, will mark the first-ever Nationals presidents race on ice. Members of the Nat Pack are heading to Long Island, New York for a running of the presidents race on skates between periods of tomorrow’s hockey game between the New York Islanders and Pittsburgh Penguins. I’m counting on Teddy to show up for that spectacle, but hope he doesn’t injure himself before we even get to spring training!

Photo courtesy of Nats320

Your chance to be a Washington Nationals racing president!

Presidents RaceJust as they did last year, the Washington Nationals will be holding auditions on Presidents Day weekend for those who want to compete as racing presidents George, Tom, Abe, or Teddy during the 2009 season at Nationals Park.

The tryouts will be held on Sunday, February 15th at Nationals Park, with registration beginning at 10:00am. Candidates will be asked to run, dance and show their celebration skills during the presidents race auditions, which are closed to the public. If you’d like to score an invitation, you may e-mail a cover letter, resume and recent photo to entertainment@nationals.com. The deadline for applications is Monday, February 9 at 5:00pm.

In announcing the auditions, the Nationals said they are looking for “energetic individuals, between 5’7” and 6’ 6” in height, with the ability to run from right field to home plate while wearing a 45-lb costume, and who are available for at least 40% of Nationals home games” (that’s a minimum of 33 games… plus playoffs, you know, for us dreamers).

Teddy wannabes note that the roles rotate between the staff, so don’t expect to get a chance to choose your favorite prez; and don’t be surprised if you are asked to fill in as the occasional giant panther or banana. Still, winning this gig could land you in some exclusive territory beyond just the ball park. This past year, the Nationals racing presidents made multiple appearances at the White House and the inaugural festivities, among other plum assignments, though posing in a 12-foot tall costume might not quite be the same as getting invited to a state dinner.

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