Wesley Brown Field House – Navy Midshipmen Volleyball
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Navy Blue and Gold
The Wesley Brown Field House is a 140,000-square-foot facility that is the home to many varsity sports and club sports for the Naval Academy, as well as being a general physical fitness building. Bleachers surround three sides of the volleyball court, located at one end of the massive facility.
The facility is named for the first African American to graduate from the Academy, retired Lt. Cmdr. Wesley A. Brown, who graduated in 1949.
The volleyball team plays as part of the Patriot League.
Tuition for midshipmen is fully funded by the Navy in exchange for an active duty service obligation upon graduation. Approximately 1,300 people enter the Academy each summer for the rigorous Plebe Summer, but only about 1,000 midshipmen graduate. Graduates are usually commissioned as ensigns in the Navy or second lieutenants in the Marine Corps, but a small number can also be commissioned as officers in other US services, and the services of allied nations.
The 2012 edition of U.S. News & World Report ranked the US Naval Academy as the No. 1 Public Liberal Arts College in the nation, tied for first with the US Military Academy. Navy is located in Annapolis, MD. Annapolis is the capital of the state of Maryland, as well as the county seat of Anne Arundel County. Located on the Chesapeake Bay, the city is home to nearly 40,000 residents.
Food & Beverage 1
There is a small table selling simple drinks and snacks, as well as hot dogs. The prices are reasonable but one should plan on eating before or after the game instead.
The court has bleachers on two sides of the court for spectators. The small amount of seating does usually fill and the space can get quite loud.
The PA system in place for volleyball games is very poor and hearing almost anything the announcer is saying is nearly impossible.
There are numerous amazing sites to visit while on campus such as the US Naval Academy Museum, 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.
Much of the crowd is made up of friends or family of the participants. The small amount of seating does usually fill and the space can get quite loud.
Parking on the campus grounds is not available. You will have to park in the city and walk in to the Naval Academy. You will have to go through a fairly tight security detail. All visitors over the age of 16 must present a photo identification card, such as a driver’s license, to gain access to the campus. Annapolis is a small city, with small, tight roads so plan ahead.
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
The game I went to was free to attend. I think most games are free or very lost cost. The return on investment is sound.
Check out the area dedicated to Lt. Cmdr. Wesley A. Brown, the first African American to graduate from the Academy. Lt. Brown was at the groundbreaking ceremony in 2006.
The US Naval Academy Museum is nearby and always warrants a visit.
Other amazing sites to visit while on campus are the The Naval Academy Chapel (home of the crypt of John Paul Jones) and Bancroft Hall (the largest college dormitory in the world).
There is also 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.
The volleyball court at the Wesley Brown Field House may be a simple affair, but attending any event on the Naval Academy grounds seems like such a special affair, that it is worth a visit.
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