The 2023 Truth and Service Classic: The “It Game”
Howard University will host rival Hampton University this Saturday, September 16th at the 2023 Truth and Service Classic at Audi Field. A capacity crowd is expected at DC’s exciting downtown 20,000 seat-venue. Students, alumni and fans in the DC community will be on hand to see which team wins this year’s title in the “Battle of the Real HU”.
The storied rivalry dating back to 1908 is significant to both teams. DC United, the city’s Major League Soccer club, has watched its relationship with the home team HBCU strengthen and become even more impactful on the surrounding community. In an interview the day of the inaugural 2021 Classic, DC United President of Business Operations Danita Johnson was careful not to choose sides. More importantly, she shared that the game represents the club’s “long-term relationship with Howard … to bring the Truth and Service Classic back for many years to come.”
Before kickoff, recording artist and reality TV star from Love and Marriage DC, Winter Harris will perform the National Anthem. WHUR’s own EZ Street will be the game’s official DJ, entertaining the crowd throughout the afternoon.
During the weekly MEAC Coaches call, Bison Head Coach Larry Scott reiterated the impact of the 98-year contest on the community. “It’s something that kind of brings a force of our culture together in a very competitive, fun way that gives away bragging rights for the year, but at the end of the day, it’s important because for us it’s another game on the schedule.” he said, reiterating his team’s focus following their blowout win over Morehouse last Saturday. “Our goal is to set out, to go out and win every game and win every opportunity we get to go out to play and compete. We wanna win”.
The Full Weekend Includes Fans, Bands & the Fifth Quarter
The game draws alumni from all corners of the country. Hampton alumni couple Stefan and April Henderson of Raleigh, NC are making sure they won’t miss this year’s Classic. The two were long-term friends and members of The Marching Force, Hampton’s band, before marrying eight years ago. Along with a close group of other alumni affectionately named “The Collective”, they will travel to Saturday’s game, which represents their rich, deep connection. They’ll meet up with Lance Reynolds who hosts a weekly radio show at Howard’s signature station WHUR as he faces off with Howard Trustee and legendary DJ Chris Washington at a Friday night event sponsored by the city before heading to Saturday’s game.
Stefan, Hampton’s Band Announcer from 1989-97 is recognized still as the Voice of the Force. As an educator for over 25 years, he shares his rich experiences traveling throughout the country to encourage students. April, a nonprofit COO, is excited to be on hand as they watch a classmate’s son, now a freshman, perform at half-time with the Marching Force. The Classic’s move to Audi Field, they said propels the already-important game to the next level, “it’s a star on the calendar and becomes one of those ‘it’ games, you kinda gotta be there for that.” Both he and April are excited to see young Oba Blake playing snare drum for the Force in front of the hyped crowd.
Don’t miss out! The 2023 Truth and Service Classic at Audi Field is a day full of festivities!
The Truth & Service Classic in partnership with Events DC is sponsored by Pepsi, Malloy Law, P&G, Sherwin Williams
Photo: Stefan and April Henderson
The Official Truth and Service Classic Tailgate Presented by Hornitos
Come out for the Official Truth and Service Classic Tailgate at Sandlot Southwest just outside of Gate A at Audi Field. Food by Mr. Fries Man, Takoma Station, Jet Set BBQ, Flavorture, Grub Rock Star & Day and Night Cereal Bar and more. Music by DJ Set Fire. 12pm – 6pm.
HQ DC Pop-Up VIP Tailgate
This unique experience will have all the vibes including a DJ and an all-inclusive VIP Tailgate from 12pm-3pm. Game ticket holders will also enjoy all-inclusive food & beverage throughout the game as well. Whether you’re rooting for Howard or Hampton, this is a tailgate party you won’t want to miss as we find out who the real HU is!
5th Quarter Celebration Powered by Rémy Martin and Gran Coramino
Immediately following the game join us on the Heineken Rooftop at Audi Field for the 5th Quarter Celebration. Drink specials all evening. Music by DJ Flow. Powered by Rémy Martin and Gran Coramino.
*Space is limited to only the first 200 people
About Audi Field
The iconic 20,000-seat soccer-specific stadium is nestled in a prime location along the Capitol Riverfront, the fastest growing area in downtown D.C, and is the permanent home of D.C. United, the Washington Spirit, and the DC Defenders.
Opened in 2018, Audi Field is a premiere entertainment and event destination and was the host of the 2023 MLS All-Star Game vs. Arsenal FC. Complete with a state-of-the-art FanDuel sportsbook, 500 premium field-level seats, 31 luxury suites, and one of the steepest gradients in MLS, Audi Field offers fans a truly unique gameday experience. The stadium houses a variety of events year-round from corporate outings, music festivals, and world class international sporting events from the Premier League Lacrosse to College Football, and many more.
For more information, please visit www.audifield.com and find us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram at @AudiField