Monumental Sports esports mecca opening


District E venue opens in Washington Image: District E MSE

Monumental Sports & Entertainment (MSE) recently celebrated the grand opening of District E Powered by Ticketmaster, a nearly 14,000-square-foot facility that will serve as a hub for esports, entertainment and discovery at the heart of Downtown Washington, D.C. (US). Guests were treated to a lively ribbon cutting ceremony, tours of space and savoring the culinary creations from the venue’s restaurant.

‘Monumental Sports & Entertainment’ quoted Zach Leonsis, President of Media & New Enterprises, as stating, “As we thought about what we wanted to be as an organization coming out of the pandemic, we knew we wanted Monumental Sports to be digitally focused and technology-centric. District E Powered by Ticketmaster is a real manifestation of that strategy and pushing forward to do things a little bit differently. For many people in D.C. this space will be their first experience with esports, and we really want to make it a great one. But this won’t be a venue just focused on esports! We’re also excited about the proximity to the 20,356-capacity Capital One Arena making it easy to host plenty of Capitals and Wizards events as well (National Hockey League [NHL] team Washington Capitals and the National Basketball Association [NBA] team Washington Wizards). The highly flexible multiuse space provides us with endless opportunities for the future.”

‘District E’ stated that District E Powered by Ticketmaster is a premier, nearly 14,000-square-foot live-event theater offering a 365-day-a-year, series of immersive experiences in esports, music, event programing, and community events – along with pre- and post-event activations.

‘District E’ further stated that the flagship venue for esports comes armed with a competition studio, bar, restaurant, practice center, Wizards District Gaming Room, Team Liquid Gaming Room, and a Private Players Lounge.

Washington D.C., (US)-based Monumental Sports & Entertainment is America’s leading sports and entertainment family. Its people, players, teams, and events bring excitement and joy to millions. The company invest and innovate to consistently raise the game so that they can deliver extraordinary experiences that will inspire and unite the community, their fans and their people.

Speakers at the ribbon cutting event also included Jordan Silberman, Executive Vice-President and General Manager of Capital One Arena for Monumental Sports & Entertainment, Liz Noe, Vice-President of Operations for Aramark Sports + Entertainment, Melissa Dueñas, Senior Vice-President, Chief Communications and Marketing Officer for Leidos, and Brendan Donohue, President of the NBA 2K League. The afternoon was emceed by Wes Hall, Washington ‘Wizards Pregame/Postgame Live’ show host on NBC Sports Washington.

‘Monumental Sports & Entertainment’ stated that District E Powered by Ticketmaster delivers on the organization’s desire to create an esports and local entertainment hub including a new bar and restaurant concept, District Bites, in partnership with Aramark Sports + Entertainment. Announced in January 2022, plans to re-establish the vacant space in Gallery Place as a lively mixed-use, high-tech venue at the core of Downtown, D.C. took just over one year to complete.

Philadelphia (US)-based Aramark Sports + Entertainment serves more than 150 award-winning food and beverage, retail and facility service programs in premier stadiums, arenas, convention centers, cultural attractions, performance venues, and unique entertainment destinations across North America. Its vision is to provide immersive experiences that captivate and prioritize guest satisfaction.

The live-event theater offers a 365-day-a-year series of immersive experiences in esports, music, event programing, and community events – along with pre-and post-event activations for fans attending Capitals and Wizards games. The venue creates a best-in-class competition and training venue for the esports franchises Monumental owns, operates, and invests in, including Wizards District Gaming and Caps Gaming. District E also serves as a catalyst to foster the amateur gaming community in the Greater Washington Metropolitan region and attract the growing influencer streaming community through its state-of-the-art streaming pods. Additionally, it establishes an East Coast satellite office for global esports powerhouse Team Liquid (leading worldwide professional esports organization) – just steps away from the Capital One Arena.

District E features a large event space with a wide variety of configurations, making it the perfect option for social receptions, conferences, business functions, community programs, and more. The venue has been open to external bookings since January 2023 and in just a short time, it is already hosting the NBA 2K League’s 2023 season (it started on March 8th and will run through August 5th).

District E will also host the NHL 23 North American Championships and select BLAST Counter-Strike Spring Final events in June, in addition to a variety of different programing spanning esports, traditional sports viewing and musical or comedic entertainment.

The NBA 2K League is an esports league joint venture between the National Basketball Association and Take-Two Interactive (American video game holding company). The league was announced in 2017 with its inaugural season taking place in 2018. There are 22 NBA teams that have teams, with a few independent teams also competing.

The opening of District E expands upon Monumental Sports’ longstanding commitment to esports and its rapidly growing portfolio over the past several years. Since an initial, sizable investment in esports ownership group, aXiomatic, in 2016, MSE’s efforts in esports include multiple properties (the NBA 2K League’s Wizards District Gaming, the first-ever back-to-back 2K League Champions, the NHL affiliated Caps Gaming, District Elite and equity in Team Liquid, Epic Games, Niantic, Dapper Labs, and Nifty Games), positions (MSE’s Chairman, Founder, and CEO, Ted Leonsis represents MSE on the board of aXiomatic and Zach Leonsis, represents MSE on the board of Team Liquid.], and now a dedicated venue.

Said Muriel Bowser, Mayor of the District of Columbia, “We are thrilled to welcome a new destination to downtown DC. From District E downtown to the ESA in Congress Heights, DC is quickly becoming a leader in e-sports. We look forward to welcoming e-sports fans from around the region and across United States to Washington, DC.”

Stated Phil Mendelson, Chairman, Council of the District of Columbia, “We’re excited to have this new venue for non-traditional sporting events in Downtown DC. We look forward to the ensuing gaming competitions that will bring new visitors to the District.”

Added Brooke Pinto, Council Member, Ward 2, and Council of the District of Columbia, “I congratulate Monumental Sports on the opening of District E – a premier esports and entertainment venue – adjacent to the Capital One Arena. Sports unite us and bring us joy, celebration and togetherness in the District. District E will welcome visitors to enjoy esports together in our downtown. The Capital One Arena is a hallmark of the Chinatown neighborhood and Monumental Sports has been a vital partner as we work to build back downtown stronger than ever. I am thrilled to see this newest development as we build for the future and for Ward 2 residents and visitors to enjoy District E for years to come!”

Stated Angie M. Gates, Events DC President and head honcho, “The opening of District E is fantastic for the esports community in Washington, D.C. and a wonderful addition to our bustling downtown area. We are very excited to sponsor NBA 2K at District E and BLAST Counter-Strike Spring Final at our very own Entertainment and Sports Arena in Southeast. Using District E’s state-of-the-art technologies, these matches are broadcast both locally and internationally, showcasing the innovation and beauty of the District of Columbia to a worldwide audience.”

Added Marla Ostroff, Managing Director of North America, Ticketmaster, “District E Powered by Ticketmaster reimagines the future of live experiences by bringing esports, latest technology and community engagement together in a one-of-a-kind space. The Leonsis family and Monumental’s unwavering commitment to their fans and facilities is demonstrated once again with this pioneering concept. We applaud our partner and cannot wait to see this space in action.”

Said Liz Noe, Vice-President of Operations, Aramark Sports + Entertainment, “Aramark Sports + Entertainment is proud to showcase the latest groundbreaking project in our longstanding partnership with Monumental Sports & Entertainment. District E provides a unique opportunity for us to showcase our commitment to hospitality and culinary innovation in a dedicated esports space, and we look forward to officially tipping off this new venture alongside MSE, Ticketmaster and the NBA 2K League.”

Concluded Brendan Donohue, President, NBA 2K League, “The new state-of-the-art District E Powered by Ticketmaster is a perfect example of how the Leonsis family and Monumental Sports & Entertainment are leaders in innovation and pioneers of esports. The NBA 2K League is thrilled to partner with one of our teams, Wizards District Gaming, and play the 2023 season games in Washington, D.C. at District E.”

The Ticketmaster Entertainment, Inc. is an American ticket sales and distribution company based in Beverly Hills, California (US) with operations in many countries around the world. In 2010, it merged with Live Nation under the name Live Nation Entertainment (American global entertainment company).

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