December 4, 2015; Updated January 26, 2016
The Wrestling Coalition of Washington DC (WCDC) may only be in its second year of operation, but is already set to host the largest wrestling tournament in Washington DC. The WCDC Invitational (aka Melee on the Metro) will continue the tradition of the legendary St. Albans Invitational by hosting it on February 13th, 2016-- the same weekend the St Albans tournament took place for 49 years. The WCDC felt it was important to preserve the legacy of what the St. Albans wrestling community started because the tournament has served as DC's main source of wrestling tradition. The Washington Post once proclaimed that an individual title at the St. Albans tournament "carries as much weight as anything short of a state championship." See Washington Post article.
As of December 4th, the WCDC confirmed that 19 teams have committed to attend the inaugural event. The WCDC is looking for commitments from unattached wrestlers in order to ensure that each weight class has a complete 16-man bracket. See Individual Wrestlers Invites here. Given the storied tradition of the St Albans Invitational, along with four NCAA Division 1 schools that have wrestling programs within a few miles of the event (American, George Mason, Maryland, US Navel Academy), it is no wonder that the WCDC tournament locked up commitments to the event so quickly. The tournament will take place in one day at Trinity University in DC. This is a departure from the St. Albans location, but it may be a welcome one as athletes and coaches will have the option to board on Trinity University's campus.
WCDC will also be generously donating half of the tournament's proceeds to Wrestling to Beat the Streets, DC. Tournament Director Clarence Long feels that Beat the Streets DC "...is exactly the sort of organization that the DC chapter of USA Wrestling should be supporting in a city where wrestling isn't even an option at most schools and rec centers." He feels that if wrestling is going to become a varsity sports option at DC public and charter schools in the future, "it will be because Beat the Streets DC saw a void in DC athletics and decided to do something about it in 2012, and we hope that our donation will help WBTS DC continue and expand their wonderful work."
More details are available on WCDC's tournament webpage.