Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Get There Early - Inaugural Parade

The theme for everything Inaugural is going to be GET THERE EARLY.

Sunday's concert. There's a whole lot of interesting folk being lined up for the Sunday concert in front of the Lincoln Memorial. Scheduled for 2-3:30pm the Sunday before the inauguration. Performers will include singers and actors in a variety of song and spoken word tributes. You'll have a chance to hear from Beyonce, Shakira, Usher, Stevie Wonder, John Legend, John Mellencamp, Herbie Hancock, James Taylor, Heather Headley, Sheryl Crow, will.i.am, Josh Groban, Renée Fleming, Mary J. Blige, Garth Brooks, Bruce Springsteen, U2. Jamie Foxx, Denzel Washington and Queen Latifah. Quite the line up, eh?

If you don't want to be the one standing so close to the reflecting pool that one enthusiastic clap from the group will send you into the frigid and rather vile water, get there early.

For the Parade -

From today's WaPo: "Security officials will count the number of spectators arriving for the inaugural parade, and when the crowd reaches capacity, they will turn people away. Officials warned that could happen well before the parade begins between 2:30 and 3 p.m. "Once the sidewalks on the north and south side of Pennsylvania Avenue reach capacity, at that point we will close our checkpoints so no more folks can get onto the parade route," said Malcolm Wiley, a spokesman for the Secret Service. He declined to say how many people would have to arrive to reach capacity. But according to a security official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to comment, capacity is expected to be between 280,000 and 300,000. That number will include only those people standing on the sidewalks; it does not include the 5,000 people who have tickets to sit on bleachers along the parade route.

if you're hoping to get anywhere near the parade area, get there early. Again, from WaPo, "Officials said police at parade checkpoints will count each of the spectators, who might arrive as early as 7 a.m. to snag a good spot. The Metrorail system will open at 4 a.m."

If you actually want to SEE the parade, get there before early. Trust me, when all the tall folks end up at the sidewalk next to the street, that leaves yards and yards of space directly behind them of people who can't see anything except the tall folks' heads. It will be cold, but from what they're saying at this point, 30s cold, not teens cold. That's something.

WaPo is offering text messages to help alert folks to best ways to get around. To receive text messages, text "INAUG" to WPOST (97678). You'll get up to 30 messages on inauguration day. Twitter users can get live transportation and traffic alerts here.

A couple more metro station closings for inaugural day have popped up. In addition to the Smithsonian (orange/blue line) they are:

Mount Vernon Square (yellow/green line) - closed 7:30am 1/20 - 5am 1/21.
Judiciary Square (red line) - closed 4pm 1/20 - 5am 1/21
Archives-Navy Memorial (yellow/green line) - closed all day 1/20 (it's right on the parade route).

If you're taking Metro anywhere during Inaugural days, especially for big events like concerts, balls or the parade, be prepared to line up outside the stop for a while without getting in. Only so many people can fit inside the station at one time, so they will stop folks from going in until that thins out.


Blogger buckarooskidoo said...

how come we can't have yo yo ma at the concert?!

1:17 AM  

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