Road Trip: The Washington Redskins Cheerleaders

My heart belongs to the Charger Girls.  They are my hometown squad.  They are quintessential California Girls and I’m a native Californian.  So you can say, I love the Charger Girls…but…I lust after the Washington Redskins Cheerleaders.

The Washington Redskins Cheerleaders are an impressive group of young women.  They are intelligent, talented, and very beautiful.  For the longest time, I have wanted to come out to D.C. and photograph them in a game environment.  This desire was reinforced the past two years after seeing them in person at PRO.

James has told me that there are a lot of things to see and do at a Redskins game, so I was interested in checking out FedEx field first hand.  And let me say that the whole game day experience was a blast.

He was going to drive down from Philly and I flew in from Los Angeles.  Since this is a rare trip east for me, we wanted to experience as much as possible, so he secured a couple of AAA Ultimate Fan Zone tickets…barbecue ribs and the Redskins Cheerleaders!  Woo! Hoo!

Now for those who have never been to FedEx Field, two lines of cheerleaders perform in the AAA Ultimate Fan Zone and one line performs at the Bud Light Pavilion.  The Washington Redskins Cheerleader Ambassadors were also in attendance at the AAA Ultimate Fan Zone.  They were signing autographs and posing for photographs.  I was in heaven with all these gorgeous women to shoot.  And the all you can eat food was nice…although the ribs were a little dry.

James and I queued up at the entry gate to await the opening of the AAA Ultimate Fan Zone.  We were joined by Mad Max, our former Arizona Correspondent who had ventured east to watch his Arizona Cardinals battle the Washington Redskins on this Sunday…his Cardinals lost, 22 – 21 coincidentally.

Once inside, Max checked out the barbecue and James and I chatted about the blog as we awaited the arrival of the Redskin Cheerleaders.  At 11:05 am, the first line made their way to elevated stage.  They performed two routines that lasted about 10 minutes in total.  It was an excellent photo opportunity…except for the smoke from the adjacent barbecue area that wafted over to the stage.

Little would I know that the stage performances would be the best shooting of the day.  The next line wasn’t supposed to arrive for another 30 minutes, so I returned to where the Ambassadors were signing autographs and asked a few of them to pose for me.  It was a little slow, so I didn’t feel too bad asking them.

The main focus of the Ambassadors is to interact with fans during all Redskins home games at FedEx Field.  They were more accessible than the Redskins Cheerleaders and you could chat them up a bit.  The Cheerleaders, in contrast, were shepherded away from the AAA Ultimate Fan Zone at the conclusion of their performances, so no individual photos ops…I guess they had a tight pregame schedule.

In between Redskins Cheerleader appearances, a drawing for prizes was held.  Two Ambassadors hosted the event and called out winning numbers.

I missed out winning a LaRon Landry autographed football by one digit.  The winning number was 00271 and my wristband number was 00270.  Eh, what would I do with an autographed football anyway.

At 11:40 pm, the second line of cheerleaders arrived at the stage.  They performed two long dance routines and, like the first line, were quickly escorted from the AAA Ultimate Fan Zone upon the conclusion of their performance.

It was a little more than an hour before kickoff, so James and I decided to try some of the barbecue.  Max tagged along and grabbed a second helping.  It wasn’t the best barbecue I’ve ever eaten, but given the location and circumstances, it was a welcome feast of artery clogging tailgate cuisine.

After dining on ribs and spicy mac and cheese, we decided to make our way to our seats.  James and I were in the first row of the lower level and Max had snagged himself a single dream seat.  Dream seats are the first two field level rows and offer the additional amenity of free hot dogs and sodas…for a considerable price increase of course.  That Dan Synder, he’s one sharp cookie and knows how to wring out additional marginal revenue by offering more in seat amenities.

In San Diego, my seats have an unobstructed view of the Charger Girls.  They’re lousy for seeing game action, but excellent for photographing the Charger Girls.  At FedEx field, I had an additional two rows of balding heads to contend with in addition to the usual sideline obstructions, so my angle of attack was not good for shooting the Redskins Cheerleaders.  But, I relocated to an empty seat two rows up and had much better luck…perhaps I should have bought a dream seat like Mad Max.  His seat had less obstructions and the free food and drink would have been appreciated later in the day. Alas, I did not spring for the additional cost of the dream seat.

I love the NFL and its kind of special when I get to visit a new stadium.  And FedEx field was a great place to watch a game.  The amenities are nice and it’s relatively new, a nice contrast to the aging confines of San Diego’s Qualcomm stadium.  The sight lines, at least from where I was sitting, were good and you could get some great shots of the game.

The weather was a little overcast, which posed a challenge as the lighting changed over the course of the game…it was not the bright sunshine as advertised by the weather channel.  But with all these difficulties, I did manage to snag a few shots.  Now there were a couple of girls that gave me some great images, but one girl stood out.  And as people know, whenever I go to a game I give an award to the cheerleader that made the most lasting impression.  This week’s Cheerleader of the Day award goes to Ashley A.

So let’s begin our coverage of the Washington Redskins Cheerleaders with some photos from the first half.

After halftime, the Redskins Cheerleaders changed out of their white skirted uniform to a burgundy hot pant uniform.  Here are a few photos from the second half.

I would say that my trip out to Washington D.C. was an unqualified success.  I thoroughly enjoyed myself and had a great time shooting the Washington Redskins Cheerleaders and their Ambassadors.  My whole experience at FedEx field was great and I had a enjoyable time watching the Redskins battle the Cardinals.   I know Daniel Snyder has taken a lot of criticism over the years, but I think he has hit upon a great idea, to market the team as a day of entertainment, rather that just a football game.  The pregame tailgate parties, the stadium amenities and the product on the field all contribute to the entertainment value of going to a Redskins game.    It’s not an inexpensive ticket, but its a good entertainment value for the dollar.

And the Washington Redskins Cheerleaders…I’m in love.  I guess I’ll have to plan for a return trip next year.

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3 Responses to Road Trip: The Washington Redskins Cheerleaders

  1. Rick says:

    You Americans are so lucky – great football – great tailgating – great cheerleaders!
    God Bless America!

  2. Thats Ashley as the first lovely lady.Shes as beautiful on the inside as she is on the outside.She sent me some great pics after I sent her two drawings I did of her.Great work as always David!

  3. Bobbi Mitchell says:

    David, Your photography is amazing…… How can I get prints of the photos you took? My Daughter is one of the Redskins Cheerleaders and these are some of the most gorgeous pictures of our girls I’ve seen yet!!!!!

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