A Syracuse basketball fan’s guide to Washington, DC

WASHINGTON, D.C. — When the NCAA brackets were released, Syracuse fans were disappointed to see San Jose instead of Philadelphia as the first round venue for the Orange. But there was a glimmer of hope. Maybe, just maybe, we can get past the first two rounds and end up back in Washington DC, where year after year Orange fans have fought Georgetown to fill up the Verizon Center. Except this time, there will be no JTIII or Georgetown fans. So while you are in town, might as well get to enjoy the area with our guide to Washington DC for the Syracuse Fan:

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There’s plenty to do around the Verizon Center

Places to Stay

DC is pretty well connected through its metro system, so staying within a block of the Verizon Center is not necessary. If you want to stay local, I suggest the Fairfield Inn (5th and H) or the Courtyard Convention Center (9th and F). Want to stay in Virginia? Crystal City and Pentagon City are both bustling suburbs that are a quick metro ride away from the arena but will provide a bit of a change of scenery from DC.

» Related: Forget 1987, the time for SU hoops is now

Places to Drink

The bad news is that there will be no adult beverages being sold at the Verizon Center because of NCAA rules. The good news is that there are an enormous amount of bars and restaurants within walking distance of the arena. A “must visit” will be Clydes, where the SU-in-DC Alumni club will be hosting a pre gaming event three hours before tip-off. If you want a bar with the biggest selection of beers in all of DC, walk right across the street to RFDs (7th and I). If you are craving the dungy basement feeling of a Syracuse frat party, stop on by Rocket bar (7th and G): Walk straight down the steps and enjoy some pool, shuffle board and arcade basketball.

Need a place to catch the games on Friday? Stop by Penn Social (8th and E) which is a fantastic venue for March Madness. The warehouse type basement hosts a 22′ projection screen along with a mix of games including corn hole, full sized jenga and even flip cup and beer pong.

» Related: Scouting the Hoosiers with Indy Star’s Terry Hutchens

Places to Eat

The Chinatown/Verizon Center area has some of the best dining establishments in all of DC. You cant go wrong with Top Chef runner-up Mike Isabella’s Graffiato (6th and G). If you want a taste of the award winning chef Jose Adres’ creations, stop by Oyamel (7th and D) or Zaytinya (9th and G). If fancy sushi is your thing, stop by SEI (7th and E) or Oya (9th and H). If you prefer a “hard nosed” meal over fancy dining, take a quick walk down to Nando’s Perri Perri (7th and I). This South African fast food type grilled chicken will be sure to please any pre game cravings.

One thing that you won’t find within walking distance of the Verizon Center is a Denny’s.

Sorry Jim, looks like you have to wait until Atlanta to get your fix.

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