DMV's pro teams have turned stadiums, arenas into voting centers

Ethan Cadeaux
·3 min read
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DMV's pro teams have turned stadiums, arenas into voting centers originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

With the 2020 general election upcoming on Nov. 3, many of Washington and Baltimore's professional sports teams are doing their part to encourage the community to go out and vote.

Monumental Sports (Washington Wizards, Washington Capitals and Washington Mystics), the Washington Football Team, Washington Nationals, and Baltimore Orioles have each turned their respective home stadiums into voting centers.

FedExField, home of the Football Team, is being transformed into a polling place on Election Day, Nov. 3.

Washington Football has also held "Turnout Tuesdays" each Tuesday of the past month. The event, held at FedExField, allowed residents of Maryland, D.C. and Virginia all to register to vote. 

"We’re looking forward to having voters at FedEx Field on November 3," Washington Football team president Jason Wright said. "Making the stadium a polling place is an example of how we want to be showing up for our community. We’re excited to be able to give back in this way."

For the District's baseball team, Nationals Park turned into a voter supercenter starting Wednesday, Oct. 27 with early voting and running through Election Day.

All D.C. residents can show up to Nationals Park to cast their ballots for the election.

“We are very proud that Nationals Park will serve as a super vote center for all D.C. residents from October 27 through Election Day,” said Gregory McCarthy, senior vice president of community engagement for the Nationals. “We view Nationals Park as a civic asset and we are excited to give everyone in D.C. a chance to make their voices heard during the 2020 election.”

Similar to Nationals Park, Camden Yards has also been turned into an early voting center for Baltimore City residents.

From Oct. 26 through November 3, Oriole Park at Camden Yards is open for those registered to vote to come fill out their ballot. 

“The right of every American to vote in our elections is a fundamental promise of our democracy. In support of Commissioner Manfred’s voter engagement efforts, and as stewards of an iconic community asset and national treasure in Oriole Park at Camden Yards, it is a privilege to collaborate with the Baltimore City Board of Elections and the Maryland Stadium Authority to offer Camden Yards as a polling location and shared gathering place this year on Election Day, just as it has been on many game days over nearly three decades,” John Angelos, Orioles President and CEO, said. “We look forward to continuing this tradition now and long into the future as we strengthen our nation, principles, and the shared American ideals that bind all of us together."

And Monumental Sports has two locations serving as voting supercenters - Capital One Arena, home of the Capitals and Wizards, and also the Entertainment and Sports Arena, which is the Mystics' home court and Wizards' practice facility. 

The "supercenter" designation means any District resident regardless of precinct can cast their vote in federal and local elections. Those locations opened for early voting on Oct. 27-Nov. 2 and again for election day on Nov. 3 when polls are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

The Entertainment and Sports Arena will serve as needed voting space for residents of Ward 7 and Ward 8, which both saw long lines and wait times to vote in the June primaries.

The voter entrance at Capital One Arena is on 6th Street NW at the "Capital One Cardholder" entrance. Voting takes place along the concourse and voters will exit onto 7th Street NE. Ballots can also be dropped off at both arenas if voters prefer not to mail their ballot or use one of the city's drop boxes.

The District does have in-person same-day registration so voters not registered now or who need to change their address can do so onsite even on Election Day.