Presidents to race in Anaheim next week

Angel StadiumThe Nationals’ racing presidents are hitting the road and heading to California, where they will run three unofficial races during the Nats’ series against the Anaheim Angels beginning Monday night, the Angels announced this afternoon.

It will be the presidents’ first appearance at Angel Stadium. They have previously made guest appearances at Pittsburgh’s PNC Park and Baltimore’s
Oriole Park at Camden Yards.

Monday’s race will mark the first time the racing presidents have appeared on the road without the presence of another teams’ mascot. The Angels are one of only four major league teams that do not have a mascot.

Photo by Flickr user Kwong Yee Cheng

Racing presidents offer no competition in Pierogie relay

The Washington Nationals racing presidents all showed up at Pittsburgh’s PNC Park for an Easter Sunday relay race vs. the Pirates’ racing Pierogies.

Abe and Teddy ran the anchor legs as George and Tom joined their annual visit to Pittsburgh, but the presidents never had a chance. Cheese Chester flew by his top-heavy rivals to claim the hometown victory.

Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Pierogies show up racing presidents in Pittsburgh

It’s been a tough and bizarre week for the Washington Nationals, who’ve had trouble finding their rhythm in the face of weather postponements, canceled off days and three unscheduled double-headers.

Pittsburgh Racing Pierogies vs Washington Racing Presidents at PNC ParkSo too for the racing presidents, who continued a tradition of joining the Nats as they visited Pittsburgh’s PNC Park on Friday only to get rained out; but Saturday night, Abe Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt were on hand to finally kick off the series with an unofficial foot race vs. two of Pittsburgh’s racing pierogies, Cheese Chester and Jalapeño Hannah.

As for that bad rhythm, Teddy Roosevelt completely ignored the starter’s call and jumped out to a huge lead, but ran out of gas mid-race and was passed by the field, with Jalapeño Hannah taking the tape for the Pierogies.

And for the record, thank goodness the Nationals’ PA announcer doesn’t sound like this guy:

Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Rain hampers NatsFest, threatens opening day

A steady afternoon rain and temperatures in the 40s put a damper on the first-ever springtime NatsFest on Wednesday at Nationals Park, as many of the planned outdoor activities were moved, postponed, or canceled altogether.

An open batting practice had been billed as the main afternoon attraction,
Washington Nationals mascot Screech the Eagle at NatsFestbut the field remained covered for most of the day, leaving Nationals mascot Screech to pray for the sun to come out, and fans to wait until evening for meet-and-greet opportunities.

Fans were still invited to enter a raffle for a chance to race against the GEICO racing presidents, but the announcement of the winners was postponed, as was the race itself.
Washington Nationals players greet fans at NatsFest
Unlike previous years, there were no opportunities for fans to request autographs, but the change made for shorter lines and a much faster-moving meet-and-greet opportunity with nearly every opening day starter, plus a few players brought up from Florida for the event, including pitcher Stephen Strasburg and future stars Bryce Washington Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg greets fans at NatsFest
Harper and Derrick Norris.

The forecast calls for a 70% chance of rain for Thursday’s season opener at Nationals Park. A team spokesman said that they would consider moving the game to Friday afternoon, but will not make that call until Thursday morning.

$5 tickets for today’s NatsFest and a chance to race the presidents

If you’ve ever wanted to run against the racing presidents, tonight may be your chance. Fifteen children and five adults will have that opportunity tonight at at Nationals Park.

The third annual NatsFest begins late this afternoon to kick off the Nationals home season. Tickets are free for season ticket holders, $10.00 for other adults, and $5.00 for kids under twelve. As of this morning, 1/2-price $5.00 tickets are also available at Goldstar.com.

New to this year’s event is a free presidents race raffle, with registration beginning at 4:00pm at the racing presidents photo station. Fifteen children and five adults will be selected to race on the Nationals Park warning track against George, Tom, Abe, and Teddy, in a total of four heats that will take place between 7:00pm – 7:45pm.

Other attractions at this year’s NatsFest include and on-field meet and greet with players on the warning track, Q&A sessions with players, broadcasters, coaches, and MLB legends, live music, batting cages, a silent auction, kids zone, mini-museum, and much more.

Full schedule here.

Video: Presidents race on ice skates in New York

The Washington Nationals racing presidents continued a Presidents Day holiday tradition on Monday by appearing for the third consecutive year at Long Island’s Nassau Coliseum and conducting a race on ice skates between periods at a New York Islanders hockey game.

With the Florida Panthers in town, Fox Sports Florida captured the following video highlights in which Teddy
Roosevelt jumped from the stands onto the ice to take out George Washington between the first and second periods.

The Nationals mascot team used the occasion for George Washington and Thomas Jefferson to debut the presidents’ new 2011 road gray and alternate blue uniforms.

Photo: Washington Nationals via Twitter

Teddy packs up for Spring Training

The Washington Nationals began packing for Viera, Florida, where next week pitchers and catchers will begin reporting for 2011 spring training. As part of a media event staged with team sponsor JK Moving and Storage, Teddy Roosevelt joined mascot Screech yesterday at the park to pack the moving truck for Viera.

Grapefruit League games begin March 1, and tickets are available now at nationals.com. Are you going this year?

On an unrelated note, Kurt Smith from the Ball Park E-Guides wrote a nice piece yesterday about the Let Teddy Win blog. Kurt is working on an E-Guide for Nationals Park to be released this spring. He hasn’t asked me for my tips yet, but if he’s been reading this blog since the Park opened, I’m sure he’s picked up a few.

Fans won’t have to brave the cold for Natsfest 2011

Of all the changes the Washington Nationals are making for the 2011 season, one that die-hard fans will most immediately appreciate is Friday’s announcement that the annual NatsFest is moving to March. If you haven’t attended this fun event in the past, you can no longer use snow as an excuse. Unfortunately, you’ll now have to take a day off from work.

After another January event last year that forced fans to wait outside in snow and single digit temperatures, the team decided to move the event from a pre-spring training timeframe to March 30, just before the first game of the season. However, the event, which has always been held on a weekend, will now be on a Wednesday, forcing fans to take a day away from school or work to attend.

For a team that hasn’t nailed down its starting lineup, the March date affords the Nationals the ability to deliver on their promise of having fans interact with the current roster of players. The team promised to “engage our fans like never before.” Presumably, the spring date will allow activities to spread into the outdoors, making crowd circulation much easier.

Tickets for Natsfest remain free for season ticket holders, and additional tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for kids under the age of 12.

Racing presidents to appear in Washington Ballet’s Nutcracker on Friday

The Washington Nationals’ own racing presidents will make a special guest appearance in The Washington Ballet production of Septime Webre’s The Nutcracker at the Warner Theatre for the 7:00pm performance this Friday night, December 10. The Nationals announced today that George Washington will star at the Nutcracker.

Tickets are available at the historic Warner Theatre Box Office, or via Ticketmaster.

This will mark the 7th anniversary of this one-of-a-kind production, which takes place in historic Washington, DC and an A-list party on the Potomac. The racing presidents are among several special guest stars featured in the show this month.

Teddy returns to the scene of the crime, and it’s not pretty

It’s been more than a year since the Nationals racing presidents last appeared at Pittsburgh’s PNC Park — an infamous visit in which Teddy Roosevelt became a SportsCenter highlight when Pittsburgh Pirates racing pierogie Potato Pete took Teddy down in an open field tackle that ESPN’s Scott Van Pelt called “the greatest highlight I’ve ever seen.”

The presidents took the field at PNC Park once again this Labor Day weekend for a series of relay races vs. the pierogies, and by all accounts, Teddy was not about to let a renegade Pierogie take him down again.

On Saturday night, Teddy ran the anchor leg, and sure enough, he held the lead again in the home stretch, but the Pittsburgh mascots left nothing to chance, sending not one but two pierogies after him. Teddy was promptly flattened, keeping the presidents winless in their 3 seasons of visits to PNC Park.

Racing presidents visit Canada to explore their Expos roots

After appearing for 3 nights at Vermont’s Centennial Park, home of the minor league Vermont Lake Monsters, the racing presidents turned north and crossed the border to pay a visit this morning to Olympic Stadium, the long-time home of the Montreal Expos.

This marks the first time the presidents have left the country.

Teddy provided the photo via Twitter, and Thomas Jefferson is reportedly helping the other presidents get by in french-speaking Quebec.

Nats presidents to race in Vermont and Pittsburgh

The Nationals Racing Presidents arrive at Centennial Park, home of the Vermont Lake MonstersThe Nationals’ own racing presidents are making their furthest trip north this weekend, as they pay a visit to the team’s Short Season Single-A Affiliate, the Vermont Lake Monsters.

The presidents will be racing during games held tonight through Saturday.

This marks the first time the Racing Presidents have performed at Burlington’s Centennial Park.

The Nationals have also confirmed that George, Tom, Abe, and Teddy will be accompanying the team to Pittsburgh on Labor Day weekend.

This marks the presidents’ first return to the scene of the crime — PNC Park — where one year ago Pittsburgh’s racing pierogie Potato Pete flattened Teddy Roosevelt like a pancake in what ESPN’s Scott Van Pelt called “The Greatest Highlight I’ve Ever Seen.”

The Presidents v. Pierogies Race-Off will take place at PNC Park on September 3rd, 4th, and 5th. Expect a good contingent of Nationals fans to make the 4-hour drive for the holiday weekend series. Good tickets are available.

Photos courtesy of the Washington Nationals and Flickr member afagen

Presidents to race during Stephen Strasburg’s start in Syracuse Wednesday night

The Washington Nationals’ racing presidents will take their show on the road Wednesday for Stephen Strasburg’s second start with the AAA Syracuse Chiefs.

George, Tom, Abe, and Teddy will greet fans at the main gates of Alliance Bank Stadium, then run a presidents race following the 5th inning of the game vs. Norfolk. Nationals Mascot and race judge Screech will also make the trip.

Nats Entertainment Coordinator Tom Davis noted that “sending the Racing Presidents up to Syracuse for a night is another way to let Chiefs fans experience Nationals baseball.”

The game will be carried locally in DC on tape delay by MASN at approximately 10:30pm.

Photo courtesy of Flickr user dougtone

Nats racing presidents to appear in today’s Cherry Blossom Festival parade

The Washington Nationals racing presidents will appear in today’s National Cherry Blossom Festival Parade in DC, accompanied by Nationals mascot Screech. The Parade begins at 10:00am and runs along Constitution Avenue from 7th to 17th Streets, NW, and will be featured in a live simulcast on ABC 7/ WJLA-TV and NewsChannel 8.

Update: Photo of Teddy warming up on the National Mall by flickr user Kevin Koski

Nationals racing presidents participate in DC Elephant Walk

Nationals racing presidents arrive at Ringling Brothers Elephant Walk 2010Each year, when the Ringling Bros. Barnum and Bailey Circus comes to Washington, their famous circus elephants are helped off of the train early and are paraded the rest of the way to the Verizon Center. The annual event has been dubbed the “Elephant Walk.”

This year, the Ringling Brothers upped the ante by adding your favorite racing presidents to the spectacle.

The Nationals racing presidents join the Ringling Bros. Elephant WalkFor the first time, Abe Lincoln, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Teddy Roosevelt took part in this right of spring, arriving via bicycle taxi and escorting the famous Elephants on their walk, from DC’s Garfield Park all the way to the Verizon Center, where the circus begins tonight.

Photos courtesy of the Washington Nationals.

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