Backhand-wielding lawmakers are expected to bounce over to Kastles Stadium at the Wharf (800 Water St. SW) Thursday night to play in a charity tennis tournament that will mark the first time some of them will have swung a racket in public in, well, ever.
A handful of members boasting varying skill levels have signed on to participate in the second annual Washington Kastles Charity Classic, a fundraiser benefiting the D.C. Public Education Fund, Food & Friends and the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors.
Tickets to the event — pre-game reception starts at 5:15 p.m., match play at 7 p.m. — start at $10, and are available via Ticketmaster or at the stadium.
Reps. Timothy H. Bishop, D-N.Y., Cheri Bustos, D-Ill., Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., Jim Costa, D-Calif., Charlie Dent, R-Pa., Donna Edwards, D-Md., Mike McIntyre, D-N.C., and Melvin Watt, D-N.C., will join former Sen. John Breaux, D-La., in team play (The Stars vs. The Stripes).
Capito, co-chairwoman of the Congressional Tennis Caucus, sounds like the most gung-ho competitor. She said she hit the court, as she’s done for the past 25 years, last weekend and noted that she’s tangled with a number of colleagues (including Dent, Reps. Fred Upton, R-Mich., Howard Coble, R-N.C., Robert W. Goodlatte, R-Va., and Lamar Smith, R-Texas, as well as Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y.).
McIntyre is the most plugged into the game. He helped recruit Costa for the charity tussle and actually attended the match last week during which the Kastles clinched the longest winning streak in pro sports history.
Dent should be the least nervous, having played in public for another charity cause this past February.
Edwards, on the other hand, will be strutting her stuff for the first time in a long time.
“I can't remember swinging a racket in front of an actual crowd since middle school; my parents and five siblings made up most of that crowd,” she told HOH.