RFK Stadium at age 50: Redskins, baseball and much more – The Post
Happy 50th Birthday, RFK Stadium! – SB Nation DC
THOMAS BOSWELL: RFK Stadium: After 50 years, it’s still personal – The Post
GALLERY: A look back at RFK Stadium – The Post
UPDATED 10.03.2011: When RFK Stadium opened DC Sports Bog, The Post (yay mega nerd)
Last week I noted the 50th anniversary of the final game at Griffith Stadium. Several days later (50 years ago today), District of Columbia Stadium opened for a Washington Redskins vs. New York Football Giants. The visitors won 24-21 and it would be years before it became an intimidating and beloved venue. During the Joe Gibbs era, it was probably the toughest place to play for visitors in the NFC. The USFL’s Washington Federals also played football at RFK for two seasons in the 1980s.
The Washington Senators moved into D.C. Stadium in 1962 saw very little success, having a winning season there only once, 1969, the same year the stadium was renamed after slain senator, Robert F. Kennedy. It is worth noting that the Senators were the first winning team to play there, at least based on overall season record. The Senators moved out of town following the 1971 season.
For years, RFK Stadium was a handy piece of leverage for MLB teams looking to get a new venue built. The threat of moving to RFK Stadium got a stadium built for the Houston Astros and helped the cause of several others. It wasn’t until 2005 that it got to be used as a baseball stadium permanently when the Washington Nationals were created out of what was left of the Montreal Expos. The Nats played there for 3 seasons before moving to Nationals Park. I think I saw 32 games there and here are the RFK memories I wrote up in 2007
DC United is the lone regular tennant at RFK and I am disappointed I didn’t get out to see them this season. I did get there in 2006 and had a great time. That being said, I hope DCU gets a new venue and RFK can eventually torn down to make may for a new Redskins stadium.
RFK Stadium has alsobeen the home of many international soccer games, including some of the 1994 World Cup. The Washington Diplomats also played at RFK.
When the Redskins played their final game at RFK, The Post did a great section about the history of the venue. The design is half-broken and dated, but the content is still great.