Nationals to face Marlins in 2017 home opener on Monday

The Washington Nationals will celebrate opening day and the start of the 2017 season on Monday, April 3 at 1:05 p.m. when the team hosts the Miami Marlins.

On Monday, all gates at Nationals Park will open at 11 a.m. in celebration of opening day.

Before Nationals home games during the remainder of the season, Center Field Gate will open two hours prior to the scheduled first pitch. This is a change for the 2017 season. All remaining gates will continue to open one and a half hours prior to the scheduled first pitch, as they did during the 2016 season. All gate opening times are subject to change.

MONDAY, APRIL 3

OPENING DAY SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

Emceed by Emmy Award-winning sports broadcaster and CBS News Special Correspondent James Brown, the opening day pregame ceremony will include:

* Ceremonial first pitches thrown by five service members, one from each of the branches of the U.S. military
* Our nation's colors presented by the U.S. Armed Forces Color Guard
* "National Anthem" and "America the Beautiful" performed by the U.S. Army Brass Quintet
* F/A-18E Super Hornets flyover by the U.S. Navy VFA-143 Pukin' Dogs
* Lineup card delivery by Specialist Andrew P. Selga, U.S. Army
* Anthem Buddies featuring service members from the National Capital Region, in coordination with USO Metropolitan Washington-Baltimore
* Game ball delivery by Captain Jeffrey J. Draeger, U.S. Navy, Commanding Officer of Naval Support Activity Washington
* "God Bless America" performed by the U.S. Army Chorus Quartet
* Award presentations including the Baseball Writers' Association of America 2016 National League Cy Young Award presented to right-hander Max Scherzer and the 2016 Silver Slugger Award presented to second baseman Daniel Murphy

OPENING DAY FAN PROMOTIONS & EVENTS

* The first 20,000 fans to enter the ballpark through ALL GATES will receive a Nationals Magic 8 Ball presented by GEICO
* As part of the opening day celebrations, the World Famous Budweiser Clydesdales return to Nationals Park. The Clydesdales will travel around the neighborhood beginning at 11:15 a.m. The procession will begin at First Street and end with the Clydesdales delivering the game ball at Center Field Gate at noon
* Fans are encouraged to visit the Main Team Store to check out the Nationals' exciting new product assortment and pick up exclusive opening series products
* DJ Flex will perform in Center Field Plaza
* The U.S. Army Band Downrange will perform at the Budweiser Terrace
* The George Mason Drumline will perform on the timeline walk outside Home Plate Gate
* Stilt Walkers will perform on Half Street in front of Center Field Gate, in addition to the timeline walk
* The Family Picnic Area will feature caricature artists, face painters and balloon twisters

TICKETS

Fans can still obtain advance tickets for opening day by purchasing a NATS PLUS Membership at nationals.com/natsplus. Individual tickets are extremely limited and are available starting at $35 at nationals.com/tickets. Only four tickets may be purchased per customer. In addition, a limited number of Grandstand seats will be available for $15 at the Main Box Office starting at 11 a.m. on the day of the game. Only one ticket per customer for Grandstand Seating is allowed and the customer must be present at the time of purchase.

*Please note: In the event the April 3 game is postponed due to weather, all opening day tickets will be honored for the rescheduled game.

After Opening Day, the Nationals will continue their series against the Marlins on Wednesday, April 5 and Thursday, April 6. The remainder of the homestand will feature the fifth annual DECA Day and Happy Hour entertainment at the Budweiser Terrace.

WEDNESDAY, APRIL 5

* Esurance MLB Awards Presentation: During a pregame ceremony, Scherzer will be presented with the Esurance MLB Awards for Best Pitcher and Best Performance. The awards were voted on by fans, MLB alumni, each team's front-office personnel, members of the media and SABR
* Budweiser Terrace Entertainment: District Trivia, LLC. will host Trivia Night at the Budweiser Terrace starting at 5:00 p.m.

THURSDAY, APRIL 6

* DECA Day: The Nationals will welcome local DECA members, coordinators and supporters for the fifth annual DECA Day. Attendees will enjoy an educational presentation with members of the Nationals front office and learn what it takes to run a major sports organization. For more information, please visit nationals.com/DECA
* Budweiser Terrace Entertainment: DJ Stylus Chris will perform at the Budweiser Terrace starting at 2:00 p.m.

GETTING TO THE BALLPARK

Parking options for Nationals fans start at $20 and are available online at nationals.com/parking. Fans are encouraged to purchase parking in advance to ensure a space in their desired zone.

In addition, it should be noted that Metro SafeTrack is in effect. Fans should consider alternate forms of travel to and from the ballpark, including ride-hailing services, the D.C. Circulator from Union Station, biking to the park or the baseball boat from Old Town Alexandria. Visit nationals.com/waytogo for information on parking and transportation options to Nationals Park. To receive up-to-date WMATA service notifications on a mobile device, fans are encouraged to register for Alert DC at http://hsema.dc.gov/page/alertdc.

Fans traveling to the ballpark should be aware that there are numerous construction projects underway in the surrounding area. To ensure safe crossings, please be mindful of signage and directions given by public safety officers.

BALLPARK SAFETY

Nationals Park is a completely non-smoking and tobacco-free facility per District of Columbia law. There is no exception for electronic cigarettes or any other type of smoking device, or for smokeless tobacco or any other type of tobacco product. Guests wishing to smoke or use tobacco products must go to the designated smoking area at the First Base Gate. Guests wishing to exit Nationals Park to smoke or use tobacco products must present a valid ticket and receive a wristband before exiting Nationals Park. Guests wishing to reenter Nationals Park must return through the metal detectors with a valid ticket and assigned wristband.

MLB and the Nationals require that all people entering Nationals Park walk through a metal detector or be screened with handheld metal detectors to search for prohibited items. This includes a thorough inspection of all jackets, coats, packages, bags, backpacks, purses and any other containers brought to any of the Nationals Park entry gates.

For game tickets and more information, call 202.675.NATS(6287) or visit nationals.com/tickets.

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