ANNUAL MANUAL: Sports & Rec
City of Charlottesville swimming pools
Fees: City residents: $4 adults, $1-2 kids, $2 seniors. Season passes: $100 family, $75 adults, $15-25 kids, $35 seniors. Non-residents: $5 adults, $2-3 kids, $4 seniors. Season passes: $125 family, $100 adults, $30-40 kids, $55 seniors.
Crow Pool, Walker Upper Elementary School, Rose Hill Drive. Lap and rec swim. 977-1362
Smith Pool, Buford Middle School, Cherry Avenue and Ninth Street. Lap and rec swim. 977-1960
Outdoor (open June 7-August 19, August 25 &26, September 1, 2 &3)
Onesty Pool at Meade Park, Meade Avenue. Mid-June-Labor Day, lap and rec swim available. Weekdays noon-6pm. Weekends noon-4pm. 295-7532
Washington Park Pool, Preston Avenue. Mid-June-Labor Day, lap/rec swim available. Weekdays noon-6pm. Weekends 11am-4pm. 977-2607
McIntire Wading Pool, 250 Bypass. Bargain admission $1 residents, $2 non-residents. Weekdays 10:30am-4pm. Weekends noon-4pm. 295-9072
Forest Hills Wading Pool, Forest Hills Avenue. Weekdays 10:30am-4pm. Weekends noon-4pm. Admission for the low, low price of free. 296-1444
Albemarle County swimming holes
Swimming at all lakes Memorial Day to Labor Day. Daily 10am-8pm; county residents: $3 adults, $2 children. Season passes $100 family package, $50 adults, $30 children. Non-residents: $4.50 adults, $3 children. Season passes: $150 family, $75 adults, $45 children. 296-5844
Chris Greene Lake, Rt. 29N, left on Rt. 649 (Airport Road), right on Rt. 606, left on Rt. 850 (Chris Greene Lake Road). 120 land acres, 62 water acres, two beach acres. Canoe rentals $5/hour Memorial Day to Labor Day. Fishing, with wheelchair-accessible fishing pier; electric motor boats allowed; playground; picnic shelters. 973-3790
Mint Springs, Rt. 250W, right on Rt. 240, left on Rt. 788 (Railroad Avenue), right on Rt. 684 (Mint Springs Road), left into park. 504 land acres, eight water acres, two beach acres. Fishing, playground, picnic shelters, hiking trails. Electric motor boats allowed. 823-5889
Walnut Creek, Rt. 29S, left on Rt. 708 (Red Hill Road), right on Rt. 631 (Old Lynchburg Road), park is 1/2 mile on left. 480 land acres, 45 water acres, two beach acres. Canoe rentals Memorial Day-Labor Day; fishing; electric motor boats; picnic shelters; bike trails (see Mountain Biking section below). 979-0964
Claudius Crozet Pool, 25 minutes west on Rt. 250, right on Rt. 240, right on Tabor Street, right on High Street, left on Park Road, park is on left. 22 land acres, one-acre pond, eight-lane, 25-meter swimming pool. Handicapped accessible with mushroom fountain and 0-depth entrance area. Kids $3, adults $5, seniors $2. Open 11am-8pm swim lessons and a swim team also available. 823-5834
Sugar Hollow, 15 miles northwest at White Hall. This reservoir and expanse of hiking trails are an easy day trip. Depending on the movement of the Moorman's River, swimming holes can be found up and down the trail. Blue Hole is the best known, about half a mile past the last parking area. Free.
These are private clubs with membership fees. Call clubs for rates.
Fry's Spring Beach Club, 2512 Jefferson Park Ave. This historic recreation site in the city offers tennis courts and beach volleyball. A brand-new 50-meter lap pool plus middle-depth and baby pool areas lie beneath towering oaks and maples. 296-4181
Blue Ridge Swim Club, Rt. 250W to right turn on Owensville Road, entrance is 1.2 miles on right. 100 yards long and 10 yards wide, this pool is actually spring-fed from a stream and is only lightly chlorinated, so it resembles lake water. Celebrating its 100th birthday in 2007. 977-3937
ACAC Adventure Central, 200 Four Seasons Drive. ACAC operates eight clay tennis courts, a family learning center, and a water park including three outdoor pools, water slides, and a grill pavilion in a park-like setting. 978-7529
Boar's Head Sports Club, Rt. 250W behind the Boar's Head Inn. Swimming, tennis, golf at Birdwood, and a fitness center. 972-2235
Fairview Swim & Tennis Club, Rt. 651 (Freestate Road). Six-lane, 25-meter pool with diving well and toddler pools. Courts for volleyball, tennis, and basketball. 973-7946
Glenmore, Farmington, and Keswick country clubs: Swimming, tennis, golf, and fine dining are just some of the amenities offered to members. Farmington (296-5661) is west of town in Ivy; Glenmore (977-8865) and Keswick (979-3440) are east of town in Keswick. Take your pick and apply for a second mortgage.
There's even a YMCA in this area, the Piedmont Family YMCA. It's on Westfield Road (near the old DMV). This local program serves over 6,000 local kids per year with a year-round swim team along with basketball, wrestling, soccer, cheerleading, youth leadership training, judo, etc. 974-9622.
The hot summer kids' competition is the 15-team Jefferson Swim League, 975-5001
Youth Baseball and Softball
Central Little League- From tee-ball to the majors for ages 5 to 12. 978-3899
Cove Creek Baseball and Softball- Tee-ball to senior league/fast pitch ages 5 to 15 in a picturesque setting. Look closely and you might see a best-selling author on the groundskeeping crew. 970-2255
Lane Babe Ruth- Big-kid ball, ages 13 to 18. 977-5772
McIntire Little League- Upper minor league and major league for kids ages 9 to 12. Fall ball, too. 817-5100
Monticello Little League- Tee-ball to major league for ages 5 to 13 plus fall ball for kids 8 to 11. 977-0622
Northside Cal Ripken Baseball- Tee-ball to major league ages 4 to 12. 980-1256
Peachtree Cal Ripken/Babe Ruth- Tee-ball to Babe Ruth levels for ages 4 to 15. 456-6544
Piedmont Little League Baseball and Softball- Tee-ball to majors in baseball and fast pitch softball for ages 5 to 12 plus a Challenger division for kids with special needs. Call league president Mike McCord at 239-6862.
Adult Slow-Pitch Softball
City League- 294 men's, women's, and co-rec teams from the city and surrounding counties participated in 2006. 970-3271
Adult Coed Flag Football
Charlottesville Sports & Social Club- Flag football season begins in September. CSSC has a seven-game regular season followed by playoffs. $39/player, $425/football team of 12. 825-9804.
Adult Coed Kickball
Charlottesville Sports & Social Club- Kickball season begins in July. $39/player, $575/team of 16. 825-9804.
SOCA (Soccer Organization of Charlottesville-Albemarle), 370 Greenbrier Drive. Soccer fun for the whole family. SOCA competition can be fierce, not only on the field, but just trying to enroll in the program. Be warned: Classes fill up months before play begins. But for a city- and countywide bonding experience with energetic kids and enthusiastic parents, this organization can't be beat. 975-5025
O-Hill, McCormick Road to Observatory Road, look for trails. Right in the City– or, actually, on UVA property– these five or six miles of single-track are some of the most challenging around. Free.
Walnut Creek Park, Rt 29 S, left on Rt. 708/Red Hill Road, right on Rt. 631/Old Lynchburg Road; park is half mile on left. Fifteen miles of trails, ranging from beginner to most difficult, located about seven miles south of town. $3 county residents, $4.50 nonresidents. 979-0964
Wanna race? Try the Monticello Velo Club. 977-1870
Fishing and Hunting
Department of Game and Inland Fisheries: To reach the state headquarters, call 804-367-1000 or contact the local office at 540-899-4169. To report poaching, call the Albemarle police at 977-9041 (911 if it's an emergency).
Wintergreen: Pony rides $15 for 15 minutes, trail rides $56-$66 weekdays and $58-$68 weekends, lessons $40-$60, and summer sunset picnic rides $95. 325-8260
Further out, saddle up and ride in Madison at Graves Mountain Lodge (540-923-4231), or at two different Blue Ridge Mountain getaways: Skyland, or Big Meadows (1-800-999-4714 for both).
It's an hour southwest of here, but if you dig equestrian events, this is the place: the Virginia Horse Center. Exit 191 off I-81 south. 540-464-2950. It has a 4,000-seat indoor coliseum and also houses the American Work Horse Museum with authentic plows, yokes, etc.– open when there are events at the Center.
Albemarle High School: eight courts with lights, 2775 Hydraulic Road.
Western Albemarle High School: four courts with lights, 5941 Rockfish Gap Turnpike, Crozet.
Jack Jouett Middle School: two courts, no lights, 2065 Lambs Road.
Sutherland Middle School: two courts, no lights, 2801 Powell Creek Drive.
Darden Towe Memorial Park: four courts, no lights, Rt. 20N.
Charlottesville High School: seven courts, four with lights, 1400 Melbourne Road.
Pen Park: eight courts, no lights, Pen Park Road off Rio Road.
Tonsler Park: four courts with lights, Fifth Street Ext.
Monticello High School: four courts, hard surfaces, lights. 1400 Independence Way, one mile past the Monticello Visitor Center.
UVA's Sheridan Snyder Tennis Center: 13 courts with lights, corner of University Avenue and Emmet Street.
Rivanna Rowing Club, Rivanna Reservoir. Teaches sweep rowing to novices and stages competitive events in the summer. 978-2092
Popular here. Biggest annual race is the Charlottesville 10-Miler, which will take over city streets in the early morning of Saturday, April 5, 2008. 293-6115
One new gig locally is the Charlottesville Marathon. Like the 10-Miler, it happens in April, but unlike the 10-Miler, which takes place downtown, organizers promise the best of both city and country on race day, April 19, 2008. It's for these among many other reasons that the New York Times rated it one of the best marathons in the country. Also, it's a private, for-profit affair. 293-7115
The Charlottesville Women's 4-miler not only stages an exciting race on Garth Road for upwards of 2,700 women each Labor Day (this year: Sept. 1, 8am), but provides a training program to get them in shape beginning early in June each summer. dominiondigital.com/womens4miler/
Serving Charlottesville's running community since 1976, the Charlottesville Track Club hosts a number of races throughout the year and offers several training programs for everyone from beginner to seasoned road warrior. The Ragged Mountain Running Shop serves as the club's information headquarters with all the latest on upcoming events. Info line: 293-6115.
One nutty local running group is the Hash House Harriers which bumbles through the woods every Sunday while drinking beer and having a blast. 979-2337
Charlottesville Fencing Alliance
Offering beginner-level classes on a continuous cycle as well as ongoing intermediate and advanced classes. Check fencingalliance.com for current schedules. 882-0711
Charlottesville Ultimate Disc Organization
Kudos to CUDO for unifying all those with a love for ultimate frisbee. They provide "venues for recreational and competitive ultimate frisbee through organization of pick-up games, summer and winter leagues." Info: cvilleultimate.org/
Rivanna Rifle and Pistol Club
A private shooting club on 100 acres off Old Lynchburg Road with everything from trap and skeet to an indoor range to archery. To become a member, join NRA first, produce four letters of recommendation, and prove you have undergone a recent background check. rrpc.org
The two most popular spots: Lake Anna in Louisa County and Lake Monticello in its namesake community in Fluvanna County.
By the way, it's illegal in Virginia to operate any motorboat– even a canoe with a tiny electric motor– without registering with the state. There's a minimum 2 percent watercraft sales tax and $20 minimum registration fee. Call the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries' Automated Boat Registration Hotline at 1-877-898-BOAT (2628).
Birdwood: A semi-private 18-hole 72 par featuring driving range, practice bunker, and chipping green. $50 Mon-Thurs; $60 Fri-Sun. Tee times can be reserved up to seven days in advance. 293-4653
Farmington: Private 27-hole course with driving range and restaurant, this country club green is available to members and guests for $25 during the week and $30 on the weekend. 296-5661
Glenmore: This swanky private 18-holer is available only to members and their guests– for a fee of $90. Boasts driving range, putting green, short game practice area, locker room, showers, and lessons. 817-0502
Laurel Ridge: 18 holes of public golfing, this Palmyra course features pro shop, driving range, putting green, rental clubs, and restaurant. Available to all for $30 Mon, $40 Tu-Fri; $45 weekends and holidays. Tee times can be arranged up to a week in advance. 589-3730
Meadowcreek at Pen Park: A public course offering 18 holes with tee times beginning at 7:30am and continuing 'til dark seven days a week. Golf carts available. Mon-Thurs: $21 walking, $33 riding. Weekends: $23 walking, $35 riding. A special twilight rate of $10 begins at 6pm, and you can play as long as the light lasts. 977-0615
McIntire Park: Located off the 250 Bypass, this nine-hole course with sand greens still relies on the honor system of payment; there's a small box located on the hill behind the playground. The course is threatened by rumors of a road called the Meadowcreek Parkway.
Old Trail Golf Club: Don't let the name fool you, this Crozet course is one of the newest in the state. Eighteen holes in the same subdivision where they shot Evan Almighty! Golf carts available. Mon-Fri: $44 walking, $64 riding. Weekends: $54 walking, $74 riding, but you get a $10 discount if you tee off after 2pm. 823-8101
Swannanoa Country Club: Good views and good price. Eighteen holes can cost as little as $12– although in dry seasons the parched earth may vex players unused to seeing their balls bounce around as if on pavement. With practice bunker, practice green, pull carts, club rentals, lessons and snack bar, tee times are first-come first-served. 540-943-8864
Wintergreen: Two courses– the 4,000-foot-high Devils Knob and Stoney Creek– for pricier, resort-style golf. Resort packages are available, and tee times can be arranged by phone. 325-8250
Charlottesville Ice Park- West end of the Downtown Mall- The Ice Park offers year-round indoor ice-skating with public skating sessions, ice hockey leagues, freestyle and speed skating sessions, skating school, and reduced-price family sessions. Times vary daily. Check the website to be sure. General admission for the public sessions is $9.50 but just $8 if you have your own skates. Deals for kids under five, seniors, and college students. Schedule: 817-1423. Office: 817-2400
Staunton has a real old-time 1960s-era place called Skatetown USA on Barterbrook Road. Skating sessions are Wed 7-9pm; Fri 7:30-11pm; Sat 1-4pm and 7:30-11pm. Cost is $1-6. Skate rental is $1-3. Available for private parties. 540-885-3798.
A selective guide to the best places for avid Charlottesville winter sports enthusiasts.
Wintergreen: Crowded on weekends, but overall the biggest place close to town. Go midweek, and it's all yours. Two tubing parks. 325-2100
Massanutten: A hair farther than Wintergreen and a hair smaller, so it doesn't get as much Charlottesville traffic, but not a bad place. Snow tubing park likely to sell out on weekends. 800-207-MASS
Snowshoe: The biggest ski resort in the South– by far. But also a three-hour drive to another state. Middle-of-nowhere location limits day-trippers, so crowds rarely exceed the number of beds on the mountain. 877-441-4FUN
Canaan Valley: The quieter West Virginia resort. 800-622-4121
The Homestead: Not the most impressive mountain, but what a swanky centuries-old resort, and it offers major winter discount packages. 540-839-7721
Ragged Mountain: Route 250 Bypass to Route 29 business exit. Take Fontaine Avenue a quarter of a mile to Reservoir Road. About two miles up, parking lot is on the right. 980-acre nature preserve where Edgar Allan Poe used to traipse and brood.
Rivanna Trail: A 20-mile loop almost encircles the city of Charlottesville, follows Barracks Road and goes under Route 250 at Free Bridge. Look for the brown signs. 923-9022
Humpback Rocks: Take 64 West to the Blue Ridge Parkway, 20 miles west of town. This 0.8-mile hike commands the finest view of Albemarle County as well as the Valley, and lures even non-hikers. High sweat factor. 828-298-0398
Ivy Creek Natural Area: Hydraulic Road to Route 743, ICNA is a half a mile on the left. 215 acres boast six miles of walking trails and three quarters of paved trail. Open 7am-dusk seven days a week. 973-7772
For the dogs: For everything you need to know about registering and parking your dog, check out the dogs section of our newcomer's guide.
The Outdoor Wilderness Leadership School at Wintergreen Resort was the standard for many years and continues to offer classes. Private lessons also available. The rock is rated 5.6-5.11, which means it has routes for beginners to experts. Open seven days a week. Reservations only. 325-8166.
Rocky Top Climbing Club: Join the throngs who have discovered the joys of scaling walls while imagining they're scaling cliffs. Open 3-9pm during the week, 11am-7pm Sat, 1-7pm Sun. Adult pass $9 plus additional $3 to rent harness and shoes, but for students, it's only $7 for the pass and $1 for the equipment. 1729 Allied St. 984-1626
ACAC Rocks: More faux rocks. 629-2 Berkmar Circle. 817-3800
KF-Flying Circus Aerodrome: The Flying Circus featuring WWI airplanes is located 14 miles south of Warrenton and 22 miles north of Fredericksburg off Route 17 on Route 644 near Bealeton. Just watch for the Flying Circus sign. Show starts at 2:30pm every Sunday, May through October, and fly-alongs are available from $35 to $120. General admission $10/adults, $3/children 3-12 and no charge for under tots under three. 540-439-8661
Skydive Orange: Located at the pastoral Orange County Airport, for new customers this place offers same-day training and tandem jumps for $245, same-day training and static line jumps for $205, and accelerated freefall (previous experience required) training and jumps for $355. 877-348-3759
Skydive Virginia: Located in nearby Louisa, here's yet another place to satisfy your irresistible urge to jump out of an airplane and plummet 10,000 feet. 540-941-8085 / 540-967-3997
Powered Up Aerial: Motor-powered parachutes. Located just over two hours away, south of Virginia Tech in Pulaski, this firm will teach you how to fly these 26mph ultralights that you can keep in your garage or basement. 540-980-0469 / 540-616-6401
Ballooning: There are no less than four separate ballooning operators in Charlottesville, and they all take off from the Boar's Head Inn, among other places.
Blue Ridge Balloons: 589-6213
Monticello Country Ballooning: 996-9008
Bonaire Charters: 286-7374
Bear Balloon Corp: 971-1757
James River Reeling and Rafting: Equipment and tube rental and transportation in downtown Scottsville for fun times floating and frolicking down the James. 286-4386
James River Runners: A similar set-up, but located five miles upstream on a slightly more vibrant stretch of the same mighty river. 286-2338
Albemarle County's Parks & Rec Department maintains six river access points. On the James River: Howardsville, Hatton Ferry, Warren, and Scottsville. On the Rivanna River: Milton and Darden Towe Park. 296-5844 (See more on rivers below.)
Charlottesville's nearby rivers won't quicken the pulse of any whitewater enthusiasts, but they're fun anyway. (Head to West Virginia for wild, heart-stopping thrills.)
Hardware River: Down Scottsville way
Rockfish River: On the border between southern Albemarle and Nelson
Mechums River: The one that goes through "downtown" Ivy
Moormans River: Stretches from Sugar Hollow in White Hall over to the South Fork Rivanna reservoir
Rivanna River: A nice calm run exists between Charlottesville and the tiny burg of Columbia where this river opens into the James
James River: The mac daddy of area rivers– in size at least. Home to the two big tubing/canoeing companies mentioned above, it used to be the main "highway" in the 18th century.
UVA Football: With coach Al Groh still at the helm and team captains Chris Long (Ivy native and son of hall-of-famer Howie Long), Tom Santi and Branden Albert leading the charge, the 'Hoos hope to bounce back from their first losing season in five years (5-7). They may not have won an Atlantic Coast Conference championship since 1991, but ticket sales keep going up, and Scott Stadium is sure to be overflowing for the much-anticipated warm-hearted rivalry game with Virginia Tech on November 24. Tickets are still available for some games; Info: 924-UVA1.
UVA Men's Basketball: With the John Paul Jones Arena now at full throttle and Sean Singletary returning for his senior year, the Cavaliers look to make a splash in the Atlantic Coastal Conference. After 2006-2007 ACC Coach of the Year Dave Leitao guided the 'Hoos to 21 wins last season, the whole team has high hopes for 2007-2008. Even the "Jack" fills up, so call the UVA Athletic Ticket Office at 800-542-8821 before you make plans.
UVA's Women's Basketball: Debbie Ryan's squad looks to get back on track and back into the NCAA tournament after missing the Big Dance for the last two years. Last season yielded 19 wins and there's plenty to be excited about. Single-game tickets are usually easy to come by on game day. 924-UVA1
UVA Soccer: That "other" version of football in the fall is always a popular attraction at Klockner Stadium. Both the men's and women's teams are consistently ranked among the best in America, and two former Virginia men's soccer players were recently top-ten picks in the Major League Soccer SuperDraft. Season tickets must be reserved, but single tickets are available starting one hour before kickoff. 924-UVA1
UVA Lacrosse: Klockner is the home of UVA's strongest athletic programs as it also hosts men's and women's lacrosse games during the spring. Both teams are regulars in the NCAA tournament and continually contribute all-star players to the game. Single game tickets are avaialble in advance or one hour before game time.
UVA Swimming & Diving: It may not attract prime-time media attention, but this program is filled with unsung heroes and All-American athletes who are always bringing home heavy hardware. Both the men and women have been regular ACC champions over the years and– get this– regular season swim meets at the swanky Aquatic Fitness Center on Alderman Road are free for fans, unlike the pigskin competitions next door.
UVA Baseball: It's arguably the fastest-growing program at UVA since coach Brian O'Connor took over in 2004. The 'Hoos had not seen the NCAA tournament in nearly a decade, but O'Connor has led the Cavs back to the NCAA Tournament the past four seasons and hopes to continue to remain sky-high in 2008. Tickets available in advance or two hours before the first pitch at Davenport Field. 924-UVA1
Alternate choice: The Waynesboro Generals are made up of college players looking to stay sharp in the off-season. As members of the NCAA-sanctioned Valley League, they play a 44-game summer schedule for $5 a game or home season tickets for $50. Home games at Kate Collins Middle School field. 540-942-8790
Polo: Judging from tourism brochures, you'd think everyone in Charlottesville plays polo or rows. While the area boasts four polo clubs, actually only a few sports-minded equestrians play. For many locals, tailgating at the Polo Grounds of Forest Lodge Farm off Old Lynchburg Road is a summer tradition. 977-POLO. But it's not the only game in town. Crozet's King Family Vineyards has a polo field of their own and hosts games every Sunday.
Auto racing in Waynesboro: Eastside Speedway If you've got the need, the need for speed, this Valley track offers drag racing on Fridays, Fridays, Fridays and good ol' dirt track stock car racing on Saturday, Saturday, Saturday night. 540-942-1219
Richmond Braves: Take me out to the ballpark– in this case to The Diamond in Richmond, to see the Atlanta Braves' Triple-A affiliate. It may be minor league, but a box seat can be a majorly good time for $10. $6 general admission. Not a bad seat in the house. 804-262-8100.
Lynchburg Hillcats: The home of the Pittsburgh Pirates' Single-A club, newly renovated City Stadium makes for an intimate setting to catch a rising baseball star. A great slice of Americana. Reserved seats $8, general admission $7. 528-1144
Washington Nationals: Still awaiting their new stadium in Southeast D.C., these relative newcomers to the National League offer Virginians a slightly nearer home team than the Baltimore Orioles. Find your way up to good old RFK Stadium and enjoy a dog and a ballgame in the nation's capital. Single-game tickets start at $5 for the nosebleeds and go all the way to $45 for a spot in swanky field boxes.
Baltimore Orioles: There are few better ballpark experiences than the one just three to four hours north. For the last decade, major league teams that have built shiny new stadiums to look "old school" have all been imitating the mix of modern amenities and downtown history that Charm City perfected when Camden Yards opened its gates in 1992. The O's haven't had a winning season in 10 years, so single-game tickets are readily available (except when Red Sox and Yankees fans fill it up when their teams come to town) and they range from $8 to $55.
Washington Redskins: An exciting season of eight home games is scheduled from September through December at FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland. Legendary head coach Joe Gibbs enters his fourth season back with the 'Skins, hoping to recover from their disappointing 5-11 (1-5) season last year. Redskin fans are some of the most loyal around, and the waiting list for general admission season tickets is 10-12 seasons. You'll have better luck with club-level season tickets. Those go from $2,200-$3,700 per seat. Or, if you get a group of 25 together, the 'Skins will see that you get tickets. 301-276-6800.
Baltimore Ravens: Once their beloved Colts moved to Indiana under the cover of night in 1984, Baltimore was without an NFL franchise until Art Modell brought Cleveland's Browns to town in 1995 and christened them anew after an Edgar Allan Poe poem. After rebuilding the power of their fearsome defense and fixing their problems at quarterback with veteran Steve McNair, the Ravens were a force to be reckoned with last year and look to return to the Super Bowl soon. The recent addition of running back Willis McGahee is making the rest of the AFC North quake in their pads. They're set to play eight home games at M&T Bank Stadium (check next year's Annual Manual to see if the naming rights have changed hands for the fifth time in 10 years). For season tickets, be prepared to take a number and wait in line, but single-game tickets went on sale July 27. 410-261-7283.
Washington Wizards: Better known for their mediocrity when Michael Jordan suited up, the Wiz are now a franchise on the rise. Gilbert Arenas and company made a decent run last season to qualify for the team's third consecutive postseason. Expect tickets for home games at the Verizon Center to be in high demand come Halloween, but call 202-661-5050 for both single-game and season tickets.
Washington Mystics: The WNBA counterpart to the Wizards have been playing their home games at D.C.'s Verizon Center since their inaugural season in 1998. They're led by their stars Alana Beard and Monique Currie, whom UVA fans will remember for tormenting Cavalier defenses when they were Duke Blue Devils. Their schedule runs May through August. Season tickets range from $175 to $3,500. Plenty of single-game tickets ($10-$115) are available on game day. 877-324-6671 (877-DC-HOOP1)
Washington Capitals: Last year was another rough season for the Caps, who finished with one of the worst records in the NHL. There's a lot of weight on the shoulders of star left-winger Alex Ovechkin and goalie Olie Kolzig, but they'll try to get it together when they take the ice at the Verizon Center for 41 home games in 07-08. Single-game ticket gate prices range from $22 to $225. 202-266-2277.