Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium – Military Bowl
Eagle Bank was the initial sponsor of the then-named EagleBank Bowl until 2010 and the name was changed to the Military Bowl presented by Northrop Grumman. In 2013, the Military Bowl was moved from Washington, DC’s RFK Stadium to Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium at the U.S. Naval Academy. The events surrounding the bowl game are still generally held in and around DC.
Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium is the home field of the United States Naval Academy Midshipmen football team. It is also home to the school’s men’s lacrosse team, and the Chesapeake Bayhawks lacrosse team. The stadium opened on September 26, 1959.
Food & Beverage 4
The permanent concession stands around the stadium offer the usual, basic food options seen at college football venues. The prices are fair, with items such as hot dogs at $3.50. No item is too expensive here. You will see many of the midshipmen trying out the many options. There also many temporary concession stands that add to the options. The Ultimate Destroyer Nachos for $8 and Wowmonds (almonds) are just a few of the nice options here.
The stadium makes every event special. There is something about the setting and the stadium that makes for a great event.
The 2017 game had the home Navy team play, which is also quite special. And a regional, old-time rival in Virginia, and its large fan base kept the place pretty electric even though the temperature outside was quite cold.
The will call stand at the stadium is the only negative as it is always a problem no matter what stadium event is held. If you are picking up from here, please get here early as it will be an issue.
The stadium sits just outside the US Naval Academy campus. If you have time, you should wander around the beautiful grounds and see where the Navy elite train. The US Naval Academy Museum is a nice place to start a visit.
Other amazing sites to visit while on campus are the The Naval Academy Chapel (home of the crypt of John Paul Jones), Bancroft Hall (the largest college dormitory in the world) and the Herndon Monument. The Herndon Monument is where every year it is covered with lard and plebes attempt to climb the monument, remove the plebe headwear and put a standard midshipman hat on top. This symbolizes the successful completion of their first year. Legend also has it that the midshipman who places the sailor’s cap upon the monument will be the first member of the class to reach the rank of Admiral.
Besides the amazing campus, one should visit the historic downtown of Annapolis. The city known as the ‘Sailing Capital of the World’ has a bright and beautiful downtown harbor area filled with great shops and restaurants. The state capitol complex is also in this area.
If you are looking for fine dining, Café Normandie (185 Main St.) has great french/seafood options, while Harry Browne’s American (66 State Circle) is a place to be seen. Treaty of Paris Restaurant at the Maryland Inn (16 Church Circle) is another expensive option.
Dry85 is a great gastropub style establishment. Try their southern style fried chicken sandwich. It is delicious. Also browse their extensive whiskey and bourbon menu. If you want something a bit less pricey, try the iconic Chick and Ruth’s Delly (165 Main St.). Just don’t be surprised when your fellow diners just happen to be the governor or other state leaders.
If you’re looking for food away from center-city Annapolis, try Red Hot & Blue (200 Old Mill Bottom Rd S) or Old Stein Inn (1143 Central Ave E, Edgewater, MD). One offers great barbecue, while the other is a must stop for German food.
The two teams, one the home team and the other a close regional team, made the stadium packed. The traditions of the Naval Academy and the Hoo crowd from Virginia ensured a loud event.
Annapolis is a small city, with small, tight roads. This can make parking a tough ticket as the ones near the stadium are always spoken for. Look for options in neighbor churches and resident driveways.
The best option would be to park downtown and walk, although it won’t necessarily be cheaper. But you will be closer to after game food options.
Annapolis is at the confluence of Route 50, I-97 and the Chesapeake Bay Bridge. It is not far from Baltimore and DC, which is good because it is not far from many things. But it will mean traffic can be pretty bad. Please plan ahead.
Return on Investment 5
It is not the cheapest game around, but it is still cheaper than a game at any local NFL stadium in the area. The value is still extremely good.
The memorials, plaques and signage are everywhere honoring various people and groups. The class crests are the most obvious, but around every corner seems to be other honored notations. Spend some time reading and soaking up the history and tradition.
Commemorative gameday programs can be purchased at the stadium for only $10.
A Boeing F/A-18 Hornet Blue Angel stands outside the stadium in honor of LCDR R.M. Voris, the first Blue Angel pilot.
The names of every battle fought by the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps are displayed along the bottom of both upper and lower seating levels where video ribbons usually go.
Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium is a special place to watch a game. If you are lucky to see the home team in action, it makes it even better. The Military Bowl is worth a watch no matter what.
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Food and Drink Recommendations
Chick and Ruth’s Delly
165 Main St.
Annapolis, MD 21401
Sandy Point State Park
1100 E College Pkwy
Annapolis, MD 21409
Historic Inns of Annapolis
58 State Cir
Annapolis, MD 21401
Crowne Plaza Annapolis
173 Jennifer Rd
Annapolis, MD 21401
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Latest Crowd Reviews
If you come to Annapolis, plan your trip around this bowl game so you can experience this place for yourself. It is not glitzy. It is not fancy. It is simply great. The historical atmosphere and the Brigade of Midshipmen are what set it apart from most other places. It isn’t the shiny new venue that a lot of places have. But like the U. S. Navy, it gets the job done.
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