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North America’s First Professional Rugby League for Women Celebrates Women’s Sports in Washington, D.C.

Premier Rugby Sevens to commemorate 50 years since women first played organized rugby in the United States when new league comes to Audi Field on July 16

(WASHINGTON, D.C., May 11, 2022) Premier Rugby Sevens (PR7s), the first league of its kind with women’s and men’s teams competing under one umbrella with equal pay, will celebrate women in sport throughout their tournament at Audi Field in Washington, D.C., on Saturday, July 16. The celebration coincides with the 50th anniversary of the first organized women’s rugby in the United States and the 50th anniversary of Title IX in the NCAA.

During the event at Audi Field, PR7s will hold a Sports Bra Drive in collaboration with the nonprofit Leveling the Playing Field (LPF) and the Washington Collation of Women’s Professional Sports (WCWPS). The initiative will help local girls in need receive the proper equipment and attire to participate in rugby and other sports. Event attendees can also donate a sports bra through their ticket purchase – PR7s is offering a special ticket that includes a $20 donation to LPF, which covers the cost of a new sports bra for a young person in need. Fans can purchase tickets HERE.

In advance of the tournament, PR7s will host several community-focused activities to celebrate women in sport. Female athletes from PR7s, including several Olympians, will visit with young athletes in the D.C.-area, including young female rugby players and youth from Girls, Inc.

“As North America’s first professional rugby league for women, we are proud to actively break down gender barriers while celebrating the history of those who have paved the way for female athletes playing sports in 2022,” said Kellie Cavalier, Vice President of Premier Rugby Sevens. “D.C. is the perfect place to come together for this celebration of women in sport.”

Shortly after announcing Washington, D.C. as a host city, Premier Rugby Sevens joined the Washington Coalition of Women’s Professional Sports alongside the Washington Mystics, Washington Spirit, DC Divas, and D.C. Shadow. The WCWPS serves as a supportive organization for all women’s sports programs and professional clubs in the greater Washington, D.C. region. PR7s, WCWPS, and Events DC are collaborating to produce a thought leadership summit related to women in sports leading up to the event on July 16.

“The Washington Coalition of Women’s Professional Sports is thrilled to welcome Primer Rugby Sevens to Washington, D.C., and support the impact that they are making for female athletes on and off of the field,” said Kaitlin Brennan, Program Director of Leveling the Playing Field.

“Events DC is proud to be an ally, advocate, and catalyst for girls and women in sports in our region,” said Ralph Morton, senior vice president, and managing director, Sports & Entertainment Division at Events DC. “As a city where people have long gathered to voice their desire for progress and change, our nation’s capital is the perfect place for Premier Rugby Sevens to commemorate this important occasion. We look forward to celebrating together on July 16.”

Beyond these local efforts, PR7s is partnering with the U.S. Women’s Rugby Foundation (USWRF) to highlight and celebrate the history of women’s rugby across the United States. USWRF is a nonprofit organization committed to fostering and sustaining the growth of girls’ and women’s rugby in the United States. Fans can engage with key moments in the history of women’s rugby by visiting USWRF’s pop-up women’s rugby history museum in the fan festival of the event. Together, PR7s and USWRF will celebrate the pioneers of women’s rugby and today’s history makers in special ceremonies throughout the day on July 16.

“The USWRF is pleased to partner with PR7s in celebrating 50 years of women’s rugby in the U.S. This event will give us an opportunity to celebrate the past while watching history being made,” said Kerri Heffernan, Vice President of the U.S. Women’s Rugby Foundation.

This year, PR7s unveiled a revolutionary new prize that unites the men’s and women’s competitions, with combined points throughout the season determining the winner of the United Championship. Eight teams compete within four franchises: Experts, Headliners, Loggerheads, and Loonies. A men’s team and a women’s team represent each franchise.

PR7s event will boast a party-like atmosphere with bands, D.J.s, games, contests, partner integration, and special appearances. Tickets are available at PRSevens.com/tickets. PR7s will also host events in San Jose on Saturday, July 9, and Austin on Saturday, July 30.

About Premier Rugby Sevens

Premier Rugby Sevens (PR7s) is a groundbreaking professional sports league in North America that debuted in 2021. With a focus on accessibility and entertaining content for fans, the league showcases the electrifying sport of rugby sevens through a touring format in cities across the United States and Canada. PR7s is the first sports organization of its kind, with four women’s teams and four men’s teams under one umbrella with equal pay. To learn more about Premier Rugby Sevens, go to PRSevens.com and follow the league on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

About Leveling the Playing Field

Leveling the Playing Field was founded in 2013 in response to the growing inequity between those that can afford to play sports and those that cannot, and the prominent role the cost of sporting goods has played in that gap. Leveling the Playing Field’s core mission is to redistribute equipment to expand access and equity within youth sports and recreation programs in under-resourced communities. With locations in Washington, DC, Baltimore and Philadelphia, Leveling the Playing Field has collected and redistributed over $8.3 million worth of sports equipment to over 1,250 unique schools, sports leagues, and other programs serving kids in need.

About U.S. Women’s Rugby Foundation

The U.S. Women’s Rugby Foundation (USWRF) was founded in 2005 by five old girls as the result of growing frustration over the historical low funding and support for the successful U.S. Women’s National Team (WNT). USWRF is committed to fostering and sustaining the growth of girls’ and women’s rugby.​

 

 

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