The MLB All-Star Game presented by Mastercard is on Tuesday, July 17, at Nationals Park, but the festivities surrounding Major League Baseball's jewel event actually begin much earlier -- a full week earlier, in fact.The celebration starts on Tuesday, the first day of a loaded schedule designed to transform the
The MLB All-Star Game presented by Mastercard is on Tuesday, July 17, at Nationals Park, but the festivities surrounding Major League Baseball's jewel event actually begin much earlier -- a full week earlier, in fact.
The celebration starts on Tuesday, the first day of a loaded schedule designed to transform the nation's capital into a week-long celebration of several of America's greatest legacies -- kids, baseball and a salute to the brave folks who risk their lives to protect their country.
Highlights include the first "All-Star Armed Services Classic presented by T-Mobile," MLB's Environmental & Sustainability programs, a special Stand Up To Cancer moment at Nationals Park to celebrate the organization's 10th anniversary, as well as visits by special young fans that are receiving an All-Star experience through Make-A-Wish, the Breaking Barriers: In Sports, In Life program and Boys & Girls Clubs of America.
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Also on the docket: Youth baseball field renovation and facility projects, including a youth baseball complex in Northern Virginia named after Nationals outfielder and All-Star Ambassador Bryce Harper.
Former Nationals players will participate in the different All-Star community projects and youth events.
Each year, MLB Charities and the host team donate approximately $5 million to community projects, a significant portion of which goes toward the All-Star Legacy initiative. The donation also supports national charitable partners of MLB, including Boys & Girls Clubs of America, the Jackie Robinson Foundation and Stand Up To Cancer, among others.
Since 1997, MLB and host All-Star clubs have donated more than $85 million through the All-Star Legacy initiative.
A sampling of the dozens of events and dedications are as follows. For a full schedule, and more information about MLB All-Star Week and to purchase tickets, please visit allstargame.com and follow @AllStarGame on Twitter.
Tuesday, July 10
2 p.m. ET -- All-Star Teen Room, Playground, Computer Lab & Community Room at SOME Spring Road (Washington)
MLB, the Nationals and the Nationals Dream Foundation have provided a teen room, playground, computer lab and community room in cooperation with a much larger SOME (So Others Might Eat) Liz Donohue House project.
Wednesday, July 11
3 p.m. ET -- All-Star Pavilion at Washington Nationals Youth Baseball Academy
The Washington Nationals Youth Baseball Academy has become a hub for youth baseball and softball in the District, and the new All-Star Pavilion, which is located next to the Academy's main field, is now a key element to programming and events moving forward. The new All-Star Pavilion is a 2,880-square-foot open-air space that will cover four short-throw batting cages. These covered batting cages will provide much needed weather-protected spaces and give scholar-athletes the ability to practice their baseball and softball skills in an open and airy environment.
Thursday, July 12
10 a.m. ET -- Negro Leagues Tribute Mural Dedication at Ben's Chili Bowl
MLB will unveil a special tribute mural adjacent to the iconic Ben's Chili Bowl dedicated to important members of the history and legacy of the Negro Leagues.
11 a.m. -- USO-Metro All-Star Depot at Fort Belvoir (Fairfax County, Va.)
This project has fully renovated a 12,000-square-foot USO logistics facility at Fort Belvoir and provided a new HVAC system and commercial-grade refrigeration units. The facility is primarily used to receive and store nonperishable goods and program supplies that are delivered weekly to the nine USO-Metro locations in the Washington D.C. region.
6 p.m. -- Opening Ceremonies of PLAY BALL Park, the All-Star Commissioner's Cup & Jennie Finch Classic (The Yards Park, Washington)
Measuring more than 145,000 square feet, PLAY BALL Park is located at The Yards at the Capitol Riverfront (Parcel A, Lot 854 Square, located at the intersection of First and M Streets). The festive space will include a youth-sized turf diamond featuring daily scheduled programming and open-play, as well as batting tunnels, pitching inflatables, a "Stickball Alley," food trucks and MLB sponsor-activation zones.
Friday, July 13
10:30 a.m. -- All-Star Mobile Dental Unit with Children's National
MLB, the Nationals and the Nationals Dream Foundation have provided a brand-new mobile dental unit serving 19 sites in Wards 6, 7 & 8 and Prince George's County.
1:30 p.m. -- All-Star "Greening" Volunteer Event (Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington, Richard England Clubhouse #14)
More than 100 volunteers will be in service to the community for this event, which will not only allow for hands-on activities (bench repair, landscaping, waste removal, painting, etc.), but will also incorporate environmental education in the form of All-Star Green Team college students working with youth to increase knowledge around environmental issues and best practices around taking action.
3 p.m. -- Miracle League-Challenger Game (Nationals Park)
MLB and the Nationals will host a Miracle League-Challenger Game. The special event will give children with special needs the opportunity to play baseball on the same field as the 2018 All-Stars, with the Miracle League playing with Little League's Challenger Division.
7 p.m. -- All-Star Armed Services Classic presented by T-Mobile (Nationals Park)
Co-ed softball teams from the U.S. Army and the U.S. Air Force will make history as they compete in the Championship Game of the first All-Star Armed Services Classic presented by T-Mobile. The special contest, which will be played among active service members from each branch, represents the first major ballpark event of 2018 MLB All-Star Week.
Saturday, July 14
10 a.m. -- Nationals All-Star Field Dedication at Walker Mill Regional Park (Prince George's County, Md.)
One youth baseball field, the "Nationals All-Star Field," was fully renovated, while a secondary field was reconfigured and improved to allow different age groups to utilize the fields and expand youth baseball play overall.
10 a.m. to 7 p.m. -- "Culture + Code"
Taking place at the iconic Blind Whino, MLB's inaugural event will provide a day of panel discussions, guest speakers and fireside chats on topics that highlight entrepreneurship, esports, culture and the arts thriving in Washington.
Sunday, July 15
11 a.m. -- All-Star High School Home Run Derby
MLB will host eight high school players from various communities in the United States for this annual national home run hitting contest, which will stream live on MLB.com.
Monday, July 16
11 a.m. -- Bryce Harper All-Star Complex (Herndon, Va.)
In association with the Fairfax County Park Authority, MLB, the Nationals and the Dream Foundation have worked to renovate two youth baseball fields that will serve as a beacon for youth baseball players in Northern Virginia, particularly Reston Herndon Little League.
12:30 p.m. -- Scotts MLB Pitch, Hit & Run National Finals (Nationals Park)
The competition will take place prior to Gatorade All-Star Workout Day and the T-Mobile Home Run Derby. The list of 24 Finals competitors includes the top three baseball and softball participants from four age divisions: 7-8, 9-10, 11-12 and 13-14.
Tuesday, July 17
10:30 a.m. -- Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington -- All-Star Teen Center at Richard England Clubhouse #14
MLB and the Nationals are ending the 2018 All-Star Legacy initiative on a high note, with the unveiling of the newly-renovated All-Star Teen Center at Richard England All-Star Clubhouse #14 of Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington. This project featured a complete renovation and expansion of Clubhouse #14's Teen Center, including new furniture, TVs, computers and games -- all of which will allow much needed space and supplies for multifaceted afterschool activities.
Alyson Footer is a national correspondent for MLB.com. Follow her on Twitter @alysonfooter.