Nationals Opening Day Offers Military, Giveaways, New Security

The Boys of Summer are back, and the promise of another successful season for the Washington Nationals begins.

The Nationals will kick off the 2015 season on Monday, April 6 when they host the New York Mets at Nationals Park. The team hopes to duplicate and exceed their 2014 campaign when they won the National League East Division.

Opening Day is expected to be a big event with a heavy military presence, courtesy of the United States Coast Guard, United States Army, United States Navy, United States Marine Corps, and the United States Air Force. The first 25,000 fans to enter the ballpark will receive an Opening Day Commemorative Collectors Tin in honor of the team’s 10th anniversary.

However, due to new safety enhancements, the team is encouraging fans to get to the park. Major League Baseball mandated the use of metal detectors at all stadiums, which may slow down entrance into the park.

Guests who don't wish to walk through a metal detector will have the option of being screened with a handheld metal detector.

Gates are opening at 1:30 p.m. to allow fans more time to find and get to their seats. They said they expect a sellout crowd at Nationals Park, which has a seating capacity of 41,888.

Parking options at the stadium start at $10, and the team encourages people to purchase parking in advance to ensure a spot in their desired area. Fans are also encouraged to use Metro, Metrobus, DC Circulator Bus, bicycles or the water taxi service from Alexandria, Virginia, to get to the stadium.

Fans should be aware that there are numerous new construction projects underway in the area surrounding the ballpark. Both traffic and pedestrian patterns may shift from game to game, depending on construction activity. Please be mindful of signage and directions given by public safety officers.

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