Posts Tagged ‘Election 2008’

Inauguration 2009: Inauguration Estimates Cut In Half

"Clinton_inauguration_1993_crowds" courtesy of Flickr user dpape

Did estimates of up to 5 million people scare you from coming out to see the Obama Inauguration?

Well how about 2-3 million? Does that number sound more appealing to you?

Inauguration officials are now revising earlier estimates of Inaugural attendees by half. According to the Washington Post, “turnout could easily reach 2 million, officials said, far outstripping the 400,000 who attended the 2005 inauguration of President Bush.

It doesn’t surprise me that only 400,000 people came out to see Bush swearing in again. I wonder how many of them were protesters.

The WP article notes that 5 million people may come into the DC Metro area, but it seems unlikely that the entire 5 million will actually make it to The Mall and parade route. So does that mean that a fallback plan of watching the festivities at a local pub may not be smart? Trying to fight through the other 2 million that came into town but didn’t want to go the extra mile to be there in person may make leaving my house a nightmare no matter what I do.

I also wonder if this story will entice even more people to try and see the events in-person. Next thing you know we really do have 5 million people in DC because they thought, “5 million people? No way! But 2 million people… maybe I will try and make it in…”

Now for some more Inaugural news.

Obama’s playing the part of Lincoln very well

"Lincoln Bible" courtesy of the Presidential Inaugural Committee

So the Obama’s got the Lincoln train ride thing down. He’s also kicking off Inaugurapalooza with a concert at the Lincoln memorial. And of course we all know Obama’s from the “land of Lincoln.”

He wants to make sure we get the whole Lincoln metaphor down with his decision to use the Lincoln bible to take his Inaugural oath. The bible hasn’t been used in over 150 yearsm since- you guessed it- Abe Lincoln used it. With the announcement the Lincoln bible came out for a little photo op and CBS has some video of it on display.

More Inaugural Weekend Details

It looks like the Inaugural committee has released some more details on the events that weekend, here’s the latest details from the Presidential Inaugural Committee:

Sunday, January 18th
No new details on the welcome event on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial except that it will be in the afternoon

Monday, January 19th – Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
The President-elect, Vice President-elect, and their families are going to honor Dr. King through various community service activities. The earlier reported youth concert at the Verizon Center will be held that evening.

Tuesday, January 20th – Inauguration Day

"the president's own" courtesy of Flickr user happy via

The festivities will start at 10 A.M. but officials say that if you have tickets that you should try and get into the areas around 9. Remember that there’s no overnight camping on The Mall and that you can’t stake a parade spot til 7 AM.

Musical groups to perform include The United States Marine Band, Aretha Franklin, The United States Navy Band “Sea Chanters”, The San Francisco Boys Chorus, and The San Francisco Girls Chorus. John Williams will conduct an ensemble including Itzhak PerlmanYo-Yo Ma, Gabriela Montero, and Anthony McGill.

Here’s a the current rundown of the ceremony:

  • Call to Order and Welcoming Remarks: Senator Dianne Feinstein
  • Invocation: Dr. Rick Warren
  • Musical Selection: Aretha Franklin
  • Vice President-elect Joseph R. Biden, Jr. will be sworn into office by Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, the Honorable John Paul Stevens
  • Musical Selection: John Williams, composer/arranger with Itzhak Perlman, (violin), Yo-Yo Ma  (cello), Gabriela Montero (piano) and Anthony McGill (clarinet)
  • President-elect Barack H. Obama will take the Oath of Office, using President Lincoln’s Inaugural Bible, administered by the Chief Justice of the United States, the Honorable John G. Roberts, Jr.
  • Inaugural Address
  • Poem: Elizabeth Alexander
  • Benediction: The Reverend Dr. Joseph E. Lowery
  • The National Anthem: The United States Navy Band “Sea Chanters”

President Obama will escort President Bush to a departure ceremony then attend a luncheon in the Capitol’s Statuary Hall.

The Inaugural Parade will march down Pennsylvania Avenue from the Capitol to the White House. Here’s a preliminary list of parade participants that have been invited.

Wednesday, January 21st
No new news on the prayer service that will take place that day.

How cushy is an Honorary Co-Chair role?

The committee has also announced their Honorary Co-Chairs which include former President Carter, Clinton, and Bush (the first one.)  Mayor Adrian Fenty and Colin Powell are also on the list. While I don’t know what exactly an Honorary Co-Chair does at the Inauguration- I bet he/she will have really good seats.

Talking about seats I was showing a friend around DC last night and we visited the White House where we saw the VIP Grandstand still under construction.

The work looks top notch and there’s a round frame at the top- probably for the Presidential Seal. I also noticed glass partitions installed in the front and center rows. I bet those are probably bullet-proof. There’s also another grandstand structure opposite of this one. That’s probably as close as  I’m going to get to the parade- or anything Inaugural for that matter.

More Inauguration Links

The Inauguration Committee on Twitter:

Volunteer for the Inauguration:

Inauguration 2009: Newseum Open & The People’s Inauguration

"National Mall" courtesy of Flickr user NCinDC

Everyone is trying to figure out where to watch the ceremony, especially those that are coming into town tickets or not.

It’s been already assumed by many but the Inaugural committee has announced that the entire length of the National Mall will be open for the ceremony. Now any DC local or person that’s been there can tell you- there is going to be no view on the Lincoln Memorial side for it is 1.9 miles long in length from the Capital to the Lincoln. However many will want to just be there just to say they were there. There have been no official word on steps that will be taken to accommodate a full mall which CNN estimates to be 1 million people. Sounds like another million man (and woman) march that day.

"Capitol from Newseum" courtesy of Flickr user ktylerconk

"Capitol from Newseum" courtesy of Flickr user ktylerconk

Another place that will be open for Inauguration is the Newseum, which recently announced that the balconies building (EDIT: The Newseum has told me that they balconies will be closed to the public because the local and national media will be there with their cameras) will be open for regular visitors to the museum that day. The views from the building are certainly going to be a prime spot to view the Inaugural parade since the museum is located on Pennsylvania Ave. You can get complete Inaugural information at the Newseum’s website.

EDIT: The balconies may not be accessible to you but since the front is made of glass- you can actually enjoy a view of the Parade inside without standing in the cold! Also you they will be showing the ceremony on their 90-foot-long video wall.

After Obama is sworn in and the pardae marches down Washington everyone will be getting dressed up to celebrate at a local Inaugural Ball or Party. After the election one of the more high profile hotel deals out their was JW Marriot’s “Build Your Own Ball” deal where for only a cool $1 Million you can use the hotel to host your own Inaugural affair. Well the Washington Post recently profiled the man who spent that money- and will be throwing a ball for the disadvantaged. He’ll be providing tickets, tuxedos, make-up, and even an after ball breakfast to those who are “down on their luck.” He wants to everyone to be able to celebrate this historic event and is calling it “The People’s Inaugural Ball.” I encourage everyone to read the article- it’s a real heart warmer.

Inauguration 2009: DC Bars Go 24/7

Inauguration week just got a bit crazier.

I heard on MSNBC today that the D.C. council has passed “emergency legislation” that will allow bars, restaurants, and nightclubs to serve alcohol to 5 A.M. The legislation will also allow these places to stay open starting Saturday January 17th until the morning after the big day- January 20th.

Personally I am very excited over the news. Councilmen that voted against in the 9-4 decision cited a suspicion that many will be drunk at 5 A.M.- and I fully agree. I do suspect that many will now be partying all night long, and I intend to be one of them.

The move clearly benefits these establishments which can now generate revue for a longer period of time, however it is a wise move to try and accommodate the big inflow of tourists that will be in town that weekend.

While I personally still don’t know how I will ring in the new President, the increased hours have enticed me to make it a weekend I won’t forget… or maybe remember…

What do you think about the new law? Good move? Bad move? Great move?

Inauguration 2009: Why Doesn’t Anyone Want To Crash My Place?

What’s up, Patrick?! How have you been? I have a question for you — Jeremy and I are thinking about taking a day trip to D.C. on inauguration day…

I was actually excited to get this e-mail.

Everyone and their Mom (maybe their Dad) wants to be in Washington DC come Janaury 20th. Congressmen are slammed with ticket requests and if you live anywhere near the area you probably have been asked by friends, family, strangers if they can stay at your place since hotels are expensive and sold out. I was excited to see that someone has actually asked me about Inauguration- my friend isn’t asking to crash the place but wants to meet up and advice. I was happy to tell her that it will be a frenzy. I’m actually kind of sad that more people haven’t asked me to crash my place- I just moved into a new house and I’m more than welcome to host any of my friends that want to see history.

Just as there are many people that want to be in town- there are just as many (if not more) people that want to make a quick buck from it. I’ve already heard my friends thinking about renting out their rooms; I’ve even heard of a scheme to have a bunch of friends stay at one person’s home so their homes can be rented out- and make even more money. A search for “inauguration” on Craigslist have resulted in many people willing to rent out their homes and rooms.

Before the election I was on the fence about trying to join the party- it’s shaping up to be a million man march on The Mall. However this will be a historic event and if I strategize, maybe I will try and be in the area to witness history.

What is the frenzy like for the rest of DC? Anyone being flooded with requests for housing? I could only wish to get the love y’all are getting.

Election Night DC

Well this afternoon I went out to vote, I went out in between the morning rush hour and lunch- so my time in line wasn’t bad at all. However I’ve been watching local news at work and other places in the region have been attracting large lines.

Have you voted yet? I hope you have- if not for me, do it for all the celebrities.

If you have voted make sure to use your “I Voted” sticker to get tons of free stuff!

I was really excited to vote- and I’ll shamelessly share my political views with the choices I made in the voting booth.

Before I go out to start my Election Night celebration- I wanted to share with you the way I predict the Election will play out:

As you can see I predict a landslide for Obama- will it happen? Will it be closer than I think? We’ll have to stay tuned and see how it turns out!

Not in the mood to watch the election results? Then maybe you should head down to Blockbuster and check out a movie from Politico’s 8 greatest Election Day movies ever.

Happy Election Day DC!

Well today is Election Day, and we all know that the 2008 Election will be a historic one. I am personally excited to vote today (and will be prepared for the long lines!) I wanted to share with you some information about voting today so that everyone in DC and beyond will be prepared and be able to express your voice without any hassle!

The biggest tip I want to share with everyone is that no matter how long the line is- as long as you are in line by the time polls close you still have your right to vote! Lines in Arlington County this past weekend for absentee voting were over an hour long- expect lines when you go out to vote, especially during peak times (when polls open in the morning, during the lunch hour, and during after work rush hour.)

Newsweek has a good article on some last minute tips including provisional ballots and brining ID to the polling place.

You should definately make sure you know where to you are supposed to vote before you leave to do it! Here are some links to check to see where your polling place is:

You can also check out Google Maps where you can find your polling place and get cool directions to it as well.

The Washington Post has local information on area elections as well as voting instructions and sample ballots for your electronic voting machines- a must for anyone that’s nervous about electronic voting.

Of course after you vote you’ll want to celebrate like the rest of the city! The Going Out Gurus and The Washingtonian has lists of all the hot parties in the city tonight.

Happy Voting everyone!

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