Starting tomorrow, the Caps play 33 games in 65 days. That is...
Caps Convention!!! (Photos)
OVIE MEET OVI!!! WE POSE FOR GR8 SICK PHOTO!!!! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA ))))))))) via @OvietheBulldog
Thousands of enthusiastic fans made their way to the Walter E. Washington Convention Center Saturday for the 2013 Washington Capitals Convention. Fans had the opportunity to see present Caps and alumni players, coaches, the general manager, and a host of other interesting guests that make up the Capitals’ organization.
(Photos by Barbara Banks)
The day began with Capitals’ owner and CEO of Monumental Sports and Entertainment, Ted Leonsis, taking the stage (with ESPN’s Michael Wilbon) and making a highly anticipated announcement. Amid a sea of cheering fans in red, Leonsis confirmed that the Caps will host the Winter Classic on January 1, 2015. And that positive news set the tone for a day of fun with family and friends to celebrate all things Caps.
Fans came from all over the Washington metropolitan area and beyond to participate in the days’ events. Brett, 21, and Brady, 19, college students at Towson University, came from Baltimore to have pucks autographed by their favorite players. “We’ve been going to Caps’ games since we were little,” said Brett. “This is our fourth time at the Caps Convention.”
Alison, from Washington DC, and her two friends Becky and Mandi from Baltimore came to enjoy the festivities. When asked about their favorite player, the ladies couldn’t decide. “We just love them all,” chimed Alison and Becky.
“We are so nerdy about the Caps,” explained Mandi. “We’ve got to have girlfriends to talk to about hockey. My husband doesn’t get it—he likes football.”
The Karpovich family came all the way from Annapolis. Slapshot was on hand to pose with them.
Leonard, age 10, from Gaithersburg posed with the Red Rockers. His sister surprised him with a trip to the Caps Convention. “I love the Capitals,” he said as he put on a pair of skates and got ready to test the synthetic ice—a new attraction this year at the convention.
Other attractions included face painting, Drop in Hockey (floor hockey), Kid Zone, Caps Team Store, panel discussions, a silent auction and just in case you think that Caps games could use ‘more cow bell’, the fine folks at the Hilton Garden Inn were giving out cow bells to help fans get loud this season. They are one of many proud sponsors of the Washington Capitals.
Fans were able to get autographs and have their picture taken with selected players. Many fans waited in line for hours to have a picture taken with a Caps captain, Alex Ovechkin. Screams and cheers rang throughout the Convention Center when Ovi appeared from behind the curtain for his hour-long photo session.
But while Ovi was smiling for the camera, six of his teammates (Backstrom, Brouwer, Perreault, Johansson, Carlson, Alzner) were engaged in a friendly game of ping-pong on the main stage hosted by Elliot Segal, star of Elliot in the Morning on DC101 radio. The crowd loved it! The guys had fun but should probably just stick to their day jobs.
Some Caps super fans also made their way to the Caps Convention. The Brouwer Rangers certainly stood out as a fan favorite stopping to pose for many pictures with eager fans. And greeting fans as they arrived, and finally allowed to enter a venue, Caps’ canine cutie, Ovie the Bulldog posed, posed and posed again delighting everyone with his warmth and charm.
It was an awesome turnout, an exciting day and a very successful convention. Now, let the season begin. Let’s Go Caps!