What to Know
- Events DC, a partly publicly funded agency, paid $15,000 for a luxury suite at two World Series games played in D.C.
- Tickets to the game were given to Mayor Muriel Bowser, members of the D.C. council and other guests
- Only the District's independent chief financial officer, Jeffrey DeWitt, reimbursed Events DC for a pair of tickets he was given
One of the advantages of the D.C. government owning Nationals Park is that the mayor and council enjoy luxury suites at the ballpark. But when the World Series came to town, Major League Baseball got those suites and the mayor and councilmembers were left without tickets to one of the biggest events in the District in nearly a century.
Or so many people thought.
It turns out while the elected officials were ticketless, officials at Events DC, the quasi-government agency that manages the ballpark along with other government-owned venues, had a suite.
According to Greg O'Dell, president and CEO of Events DC, MLB offered the agency a 15-seat suite for Games 3 and 5. Odell tells News4 the partly publicly funded agency paid approximately $15,000 for the tickets.
"As I recall, the tickets were $499 apiece," O'Dell said in a phone conversation.
The tickets were gifted to a number of people who O'Dell describes as "Customers, friends or stakeholders of Events DC."
Among the politicians getting the highly sought after tickets were Mayor Muriel Bowser, former Mayor Adrian Fenty, Councilmembers Brandon Todd, Trayon White and Jack Evans. Former Council Chair Linda Cropp and Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton were also among the guests.
Fenty and Cropp were at the center of the heated debate in 2004 over whether to fund a baseball stadium. Fenty was one of six councilmembers to vote against publicly funding the ballpark.
According to a spokesperson for Bowser, the mayor invited Cropp, Holmes Norton and conservative political commentator Armstrong Williams, who posted a photo of himself with the mayor in the luxury suite thanking her for inviting him.
O'Dell acknowledged not every councilmember was offered tickets, saying his offices distributes tickets to councilmembers throughout the year to various events. O'Dell added some people were offered tickets but declined, but he would not provide any specifics.
While the tickets had a face value of about $500, according to O'Dell, tickets were selling for thousands of dollars on the resale market. Events DC distributed 15 tickets to each of the two games, only the District's chief financial officer, Jeffrey DeWitt, reimbursed the agency for his tickets. A spokesperson for DeWitt confirms the independent CFO received and paid for two tickets to Game 3. Odell tells News4 no other guests offered to reimburse the agency for their tickets.
The complete list of those who received tickets to the World Series games:
Friday, Game 3
- Mayor Muriel Bowser
- Ryan Conway of Events DC and his guest
- Linda Cropp, former Chair DC Council
- Sports journalist Lindsay Czarniak
- Jeff DeWitt, DC OCFO and his guest (as independent CFO, DeWitt elected to pay for the tickets)
- Adrian Fenty
- Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton
- Journalist Craig Melvin of NBC News
- Greg O'Dell, president and CEO of Events DC
- Jalina Porter
- Councilmember Trayon White
- Political commentator Armstrong Williams
Sunday, Game 5
- Donovan Anderson
- Alex Brody of the Association of the United States Army
- Councilmember Jack Evans and his guest
- Acting Deputy Mayor John Falcicchio
- Stacey Knoppel of Events DC
- Jean Riley of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics
- John Schein
- Councilmember Brandon Todd and his guest
- Samuel Thomas of Events DC
- Wayne Turnage of the DCHFA and his guest
- Steve Walker
- Rachel Zukrow