Major League Bocce began for many of the same reasons anyone plays bocce ball: the founders were looking for a way to enjoy the social aspect of organized sports, but with less of an athletic component and preferably with a drink in hand. Since forging that modest alliance of close-knit friends in 2004, the company has reached for ever higher goals. Each season, they donate a portion of their registration fees to local charities, and the prize for each winning team is a donation to the charity of their choice. This has added up to more than $100,000 in donations throughout the company's 10-year existence. Like a house spider when your back is turned, the company is swiftly growing?8,000 players now participate not only in Washington D.C., but also Philadelphia, Austin, Pittsburgh, Dallas, and Boston.
When British scientist and visionary James Smithson left his estate to the United States, he hoped that it would one day become ?an establishment for the increase and diffusion of knowledge.? Smithson got his wish, and then some. His generous gift transformed into The Smithsonian Institution, the world?s largest museum and research complex.
Since its founding in 1846, The Smithsonian has blossomed into exactly what Smithson envisioned: a place where knowledge is celebrated, advanced, and shared with new generations. Anchored on the National Mall, the Institution?s many branches explore the worlds of art, science, history, and culture, inviting guests to discover their origins and see what the future might have in store.
In 2005, the Montreal Expos became the Canadian Expats, pledging a new allegiance and taking on a new identity as the first big-league club to inhabit America's capital since the Senators moved to Texas in 1971. In 2008, the team christened its new stadium, Nationals Park, which today welcomes up to 41,418 fans, its 4,500-square-foot HD scoreboard almost distracting from the panoramic views of the Potomac riverfront, the Capitol dome, and the Washington Monument. Accredited as a Leadership in Energy and Environment Design stadium, Nationals Park also sits 24 feet below street level, making its main concourse even with city sidewalks and saving many fans the danger of riding frozen, thin-aired escalators just to reach their seats.
Shecky's Girls Night Out makes planning a social outing between friends easy with its dozens of fashion, jewelry, and beauty product displays and samples to peruse. Having started as a published guide to New York City nightlife, Shecky's now stages stylish shindigs across the country and has garnered nationwide notice from media outlets—including Bloomberg News —for its ladies-only soirees. Drawing on its roots as a party-planning brain trust, Shecky’s relies on a talented staff to augment vendor wares with complimentary snacks and cocktails, goody bags, and makeovers. Take a peek at one of Shecky’s past events, where, like the locker room at a WNBA game, men are conspicuously absent.
At TennisTopia, staffers help players optimize their thwacking abilities with a large inventory of rackets, balls, and other gear from brands such as Adidas, Nike, and Wilson and a variety of tennis-oriented services. Restringing keeps rackets in taut, top-notch shape, and the shop also equips male or female teams with the weapons and matching uniforms to wage battle against gophers popping up through the clay in the middle of matches.
United Social Sports brings recreational athletes together to socialize and showcase their hand-eye coordination. Free agents or team-sized groups register for the organization’s casual coed leagues dedicated to traditional sports such as softball and volleyball as well as carnival games such as cornhole and skee-ball. Each league hosts 6–8 weekly matches, which culminate in a final tournament and an end-of-season party—much like youth-sports leagues, but with postgame drink specials.