Caps Game From the Press Box

Friday, Sept 27, I got the opportunity to go to the Caps game with eight of my classmates and our professor. Pretty cool right? Well it doesn’t end there; we got to sit in the press box and attend the post-game press conference! This day was interesting to say the least, I won the alphabet game on the way up to DC, we witnessed someone get mugged while deciding where to get dinner, and professor Woo had chipotle for the first time.

But those were by no means the highlights of the night. When first walking into to the building, through the press entrance, we were greeted by Megan Eichenburg, Communications Coordinator for the Capitals, and given our credentials. She then took us upstairs to the top floor where the press box is located. Once we got to our destination we picked up 3 packets: Game Notes, Daily Clips, and Team Standings. We then had a quick Q&A session where she mostly just talked about where to sit and what would be happening throughout the game. We were reminded not to cheer for either team and were handed a roster of both teams once we got to our seats.

After the first period, we had another Q&A session with Megan Eichenburg. During this time we asked her questions about her job such as daily tasks, travel opportunities, interacting with players… etc. I learned a lot during this time. First, how important social media is to the sport industry, and not just during games. Social media helps build relationships with the fans. Also, she talked about keeping a strong relationship with the media and writing news releases often, even if the story isn’t very strong; being in the news as much as possible is key. Finally, community outreach is important for the team, most of the players have a cause or organization that they advocate for. We did not have a Q&A session after the second period. We were given Event Summaries during each intermission as well as Scoring Notes during the Second intermission.

I learned how hard it is not to cheer and get caught up in the action, even though I am not a hockey fan and this was the first NHL game I’ve ever seen.

After the Final buzzer went off we had another Q&A session, but this time it was with Brian Kiefer, intern. He told us about his daily tasks and his pervious experience that led him to land this amazing internship. I was impressed at the amount of responsibilities that he has as an intern. For example, he was the one who wrote the summaries during the intermission. He also does most of the written work such as news releases, media kits…etc. We were then escorted to the press conference room where the coach was on stand. The press conference reminded me of the press conferences we hold in the classroom, I was pleasantly surprised at how similar it was. The only difference was that the questions seemed to flow together, and no one raised their hands to speak.

This was truly an amazing experience and I feel so lucky that I got to be a part of it.