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03/26/2008 9:00 AM ET
Washington Nationals to host inaugural game at Nationals Park on Sunday, March 30 at 8:15 PM
tickets for any Major League Baseball game
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The Washington Nationals will host the Atlanta Braves at 8:15 pm in the Inaugural Game at Nationals Park, their new home on South Capitol Street, SE in the Capitol Riverfront District. The Nationals open the 2008 Major League Baseball season with this true "home opener", which will be broadcast nationally on ESPN.

Nationals Park gates will open four and a half hours prior to the first pitch at 3:30 pm. All guests will receive a red Curly "W" lanyard and a "Welcome Home" rally towel as they enter the ballpark. Fans are encouraged to enter early and enjoy the various amenities and entertainment options available at Major League Baseball's most spectacular new venue, including the Red Porch Restaurant and Strike Zone kids area, located in the Center Field Plaza. As spectators exit the Navy Yard Metro Station onto Half Street, they will be greeted by the music of the Sheiks of Dixie, a local Dixieland jazz band. The Ringers, a Washington, DC barbershop quartet, will entertain guests as they make their way to the Center Field Gate. Face painters, balloon artists and stilt walkers will welcome fans at the entrance to the Center Field Plaza. Additional Opening Night entertainment may be found inside the ballpark, including the Mambo Combo, a regional zydeco band, Washington, DC guitarist Brian Gross staged in the Lexus Presidents Club, and face painters, caricaturists and balloon artists throughout the Main Concourse. Fans will have the opportunity to view the both the Braves and the Nationals batting practice as Atlanta takes the field at approximately 4:30 pm followed by Washington at 5:45 pm. The Nats Express, the free shuttle for fans who choose to park for free at RFK Stadium, will depart from RFK beginning at 3:00 pm and run continuously until one and a half hours after the final out.

Pre-game ceremonies, led by Nationals Television Broadcaster and Hall-of-Fame Pitcher Don Sutton, will begin at approximately 7:45 pm with the Nationals "Welcome Home" video, shown on the 102' X 47' HDTV scoreboard. Following the video, two giant American Flags will be unfurled in the outfield by the DC National Guard. The American Flag unfurling will be followed by with a flyover by four F-16s from the 121st Fighter Squadron of the DC Air National Guard. The Washington Nationals 2008 roster will then be introduced, followed by the presentation of the colors by the Joint Services Color Guard. The National Anthem will be performed by Denyce Graves, recognized worldwide as one of today's most exciting vocal stars. Denyce is a native Washingtonian and Duke Ellington School for Performing Arts graduate. The ceremonial first pitch will be thrown out by the 43rd President of the United States, George W. Bush, for the first time since 2005, when baseball returned to the District and he held the honor at RFK Stadium. The President will be escorted to the pitchers mound by Nationals Managing Principal Owner Theodore N. Lerner, Nationals Manager Manny Acta and Nationals Third Baseman Ryan Zimmerman. Following the ceremonial first pitch, Washington, DC Mayor Adrian M. Fenty will start the game and a new Nationals tradition with "Washington....Let's Play Ball". American Idol finalist Elliot Yamin, a Richmond, Virginia native, will perform "God Bless America" prior to the Seventh Inning Stretch.

Grandstand tickets for Opening Night, in Sections 401 and 402, may be purchased for $5 at the Nationals Park Main Box Office, located on Half and N Streets, beginning at 3:30 pm on March 30. Fans may not camp out on Nationals Park grounds or line up for tickets prior to 3:00 pm. Fans may purchase only one ticket per person and must immediately enter the ballpark through the Center Field gates, located next to the Main Box Office. Please note, fans may not re-enter the ballpark once they exit through the gates at any time. The Grandstand seats are available for purchase only on day of game when gates open at Nationals Park, normally two and a half hours prior to first pitch.

"The Washington Nationals are excited to offer these affordable seats for the Inaugural Game at Nationals Park," said Nationals Team President Stan Kasten. "Fans who purchase these tickets will be asked to enter the ballpark immediately to ensure these tickets remain in the hands of the loyal fans who have anxiously awaited the opening of the ballpark."

The Washington Nationals will head to Philadelphia following their home opener and return to Washington on April 7 against the Florida Marlins at 7:05 pm. Season Ticket packages may be purchased by calling 202.675.NATS (6287) or going online at Individual game tickets may be purchased by calling 888.632.NATS (6287) or via For more information on transportation to Nationals Park, please log on to

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