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02/25/2008 1:02 PM ET
Washington Nationals announce partnerships with local vendors
Nationals Park fare will include a variety of specialty stands from local companies
tickets for any Major League Baseball game
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The Washington Nationals today announced that they have partnered with 11 local food service vendors at the new Nationals Park. The Nationals will play the first game of the 2008 season when they take on the Baltimore Orioles in an Exhibition Game on Saturday, March 29 at 6:00 p.m. The team will open its regular season on the following evening when they play host to the Atlanta Braves in a nationally televised game at 8:05 p.m. on ESPN. "The Nationals and Centerplate, our overall food and beverage partner, are committed to celebrating the culture and cuisine of the Washington, D.C. region in the ballpark", said Team President Stan Kasten. "These partnerships with local vendors will offer fans some of the best of our area selections."

The following local vendors will have specialty stands/carts throughout the concourses and various fan entertainment areas at Nationals Park: Ben's Chili Bowl, Boardwalk Fries, Cantina Marina, Gifford's Ice Cream, Krazee Ice, Kosher Sports, Hard Times Café, La Piccola Gelateria, Mayorga Coffee, Noah's Pretzels, and Red Hot and Blue.

An historical Washington institution, Ben's Chili Bowl has become a favorite among locals and visitors alike since opening its doors in 1958. Guests will be treated to Ben's Original Half Smoke, Vegetarian Chili, Turkey Burger, and Chili Dog.

Boardwalk Fries was conceived in 1980 and these tasty fries are served in major malls, arenas, stadiums, amusement parks, and universities. Boardwalk Fries will also be serving fresh chicken fingers at their location.

Cantina Marina opened in May of 2003 on the Southwest Waterfront and will offer fans a refreshing option in frozen specialty drinks as well as an exciting menu full of tex-mex, and Cajun food choices.

Opened in 1938, Gifford's Ice Cream & Candy Co. is the oldest and most distinguished ice cream parlor in Washington, DC. Gifford's stands will feature scooped ice cream, in addition to the "Dinger", a vanilla ice cream and chocolate cookie sandwich. A portion of the sale of each sandwich, also offered at all Gifford's locations, will be donated to the Washington Nationals Dream Foundation.

Kosher Sports will be represented at two locations. Fans can enjoy grilled kosher hot dogs, garlic knishes, and other ballpark treats.

Krazee Ice will offer fans an icy treat with their tropical snow cones featuring their tasty home made syrups.

Hard Times Café opened their doors in 1980 and will serve, among other favorites, their famous selection of chili, including chili mac as well as chicken wings

La Piccola Gelateria specializes in authentic Italian-style gelatos and sorbettos in a variety of flavors.

Mayorga Coffee specializes in the sourcing and selection of fine estate coffees directly from small shade coffee farms. Espresso, cappuccinos, and lattes will be served from their four cart locations.

A company that began in 2007, Noah's Pretzels will serve a variety of fresh hand rolled pretzels, along with the signature Curly "W" pretzel. The name "Noah's Pretzels" comes from Dwayne Herndon's (one of the two owners) youngest son Noah who is autistic. Autistic children many times have special dietary needs so Noah's will offer a gluten and casein free pretzel as part of their menu. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of the gluten free pretzels will go to supporting autism in the greater DC region.

A favorite at RFK Stadium for the past two years, Red Hot & Blue will offer fans its esteemed barbeque items, including beef, brisket, pulled chicken and pork with a variety of sauces and side offerings.

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