News & Politics

Nationals Park Will Open for Baseball This Season—but No Fans Allowed for Now

Fans could eventually be there as DC's government re-examines health metrics.

Opening day of the Washington Nationals' 2020 season. Photograph by Evy Mages

DC approved Nats Park to open for the 2021 baseball season today, after the Washington Nationals submitted an application to the DC Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency. As of now, however, no fans will be allowed. But that could change: the District will continue to reexamine public health metrics, including the prevalence of more contagious virus variants and vaccination rates, and plans to get the team “some word on ticket sales for fans” by the middle of March.

“With you, we are looking forward to fans returning to Nats Park. Answers as to how many and when are still premature,”  HSEMA Director Christopher Rodriguez wrote in a letter to Nationals leadership.

The 2019 World Series champs played last season to an empty stadium. (And as you may recall, Anthony Fauci threw out a quintessentially 2020 first pitch.) Some local fans have been hoping that at least a limited number of spectators will be allowed this year. Or perhaps vaccinated fans could gain entry, as was the case for the 7.500 health care workers who attended the Super Bowl.

The season is set to begin on April 1 with a home game against the New York Mets.

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Jessica Sidman
Food Editor

Jessica Sidman covers the people and trends behind D.C.’s food and drink scene. Before joining Washingtonian in July 2016, she was Food Editor and Young & Hungry columnist at Washington City Paper. She is a Colorado native and University of Pennsylvania grad.