A Glimpse at Obama’s Inauguration


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Thanks to @marklemunyon, he posted a link on Twitter that got me thinking about the inauguration of our 44th President, Barack Obama. I’ve been scouring the Internet for a taste of what’s to come:

D.C. Officials Considering Opening Bars 24-7

The D.C. Council is considering legislation today that would allow bars to serve alcohol until 5 a.m. — three hours longer than current regulations allow — and remain open 24 hours a day from Jan. 17 through 21 to serve crowds in town for the inauguration.

The bill, offered by council member Jim Graham (D-Ward 1), is up for a vote at today’s legislative meeting.

“This is absolutely a unique opportunity, and we want our night life to participate in all of the activities and events during the Inauguration,” Graham told Post reporter Hamil R. Harris today… see Washington Post article.

Metro Plans for Inauguration Weekend

Capital dome with flagMetrorail will operate rush hour service for 15 consecutive hours (4 a.m. to 7 p.m.), will stay open for two extra hours (until 2 a.m.), offer free parking at its facilities and will be one important transportation alternative for people who are planning to attend the Inauguration of President-elect Barack Obama on Tuesday, January 20, 2009.

Metro officials expect extremely crowded conditions on Inauguration Day. Metrorail stations and trains will be packed as people head to the Inauguration, and expect to see even tighter conditions afterward. Expect the crowds to be huge with hundreds of thousands of people expected to be in the nation’s capital not only for Inauguration Day, but for the days preceding it as well… see Metro website.

Banned from inauguration: strollers, umbrellas

WASHINGTON (AP) — Camera and cell phone, yes. Backpack, no.

If you’re planning a trip to the Jan. 20 inaugural ceremony of President-elect Barack Obama, be warned: Backpacks, signs, umbrellas and thermoses are forbidden.

The list of prohibited items on the Capitol grounds includes the obvious — firearms, explosives and knives — along with some head-scratchers, like coolers, strollers and laser pointers… see extensive list of prohibited items.

Air patrols, cameras to watch big inaugural crowd

WASHINGTON (AP) — Law enforcement officials bracing for the largest crowds in inaugural history are preparing far-reaching security — thousands of video cameras, sharpshooters, air patrols — to safeguard President-elect Barack Obama’s swearing-in.

People attending the ceremony and parade on Jan. 20 can expect to be searched by machines, security personnel or both. Precautions will range from the routine — magnetometers like those used at airports — to countersnipers trained to hit a target the size of a teacup saucer from 1,000 yards away. Plus undercover officers, bomb sniffing dogs and air patrols see AP story.

Can Mall Be Filled For an Inauguration? 4 Million May Try It.

By Nikita Stewart and Michael E. Ruane
Washington Post Staff Writers
Tuesday, November 18, 2008; A01

District and federal officials are preparing for as many as 4 million people for the inauguration of President-elect Barack Obama, a crowd that would be three or four times larger than previous big events on the Mall.

Only a fraction of those people will be close enough to get a good look at the action. But officials are planning extra JumboTrons at the Mall and along the inaugural parade route so that spectators can feel a part of the historic day.

“The Mall actually may be the best seat in the house. . . . It’ll kind of be like the world’s biggest stage and auditorium on January 20th,” said Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D), adding that the crowd projections have emerged in briefings conducted by federal and local officials… Washington Post article.

2009 Federal Holidays

Inauguration Day, January 20, 2009, falls on a Tuesday. An employee who works in the District of Columbia, Montgomery or Prince George’s Counties in Maryland, Arlington or Fairfax Counties in Virginia, or the cities of Alexandria or Falls Church in Virginia, and who is regularly scheduled to perform nonovertime work on Inauguration Day, is entitled to a holiday. (See 5 U.S.C. 6103(c).) There is no in-lieu-of-holiday for employees who are not regularly scheduled to work on Inauguration Day… see Federal Holiday calendar.

Inaugural Lodging Going Fast

The Fairmont hotel is in Washington, D.C., is offering a $40,000 Eco-Inaugural package, a four-night extravaganza that includes the exclusive use of a Lexus hybrid vehicle, driver included, and his and her organic spa treatments with a massage and manicures.

The Fairmont hotel is in Washington, D.C., is offering a $40,000 "Eco-Inaugural" package, a four-night extravaganza that includes the exclusive use of a Lexus hybrid vehicle, driver included, and his and her organic spa treatments with a massage and manicures.

…City hotels were at 91 percent capacity for the 2005 inauguration, but this year is expected to surge past that. “It’s clear this inauguration will be something we haven’t seen before,” Barry-Austin said. Hundreds ofrooms and apartments are also available at such Web sites as www.craigslist.com and www.inauguralhomes.com (usually for outlandish prices). The city endorsed such sales by waiving the licensing requirements for prospective landlords during inauguration week… see Chicago Tribune article.

See also: MSNBC Hotel Rooms Vanishing Quick for Inauguration Day.

*UPDATE 12/3/08 @ 2:23pm EST*

Thanks to @origamislayer, here’s another article:

Think You’re Booked? Think Again.

Some Hotels Hike Inauguration Prices and Stays as Demand Surges

By David Nakamura

Washington Post Staff Writer

Tuesday, December 2, 2008; Page B01

Deirdre Flanagan, a lifelong Democrat, wanted to splurge on the presidential inauguration.

Although she lives in Annapolis, Flanagan decided to book a hotel room closer to Washington so that she and her daughter would have a place to crash after attending the Jan. 20 festivities. On Oct. 27, a week before Sen. Barack Obama won the general election, Flanagan logged on to Priceline.com and reserved one night in a suite at the Bolger Hotel and Conference Center in Potomac for $159.

But on Nov. 18, Flanagan received a letter from the hotel.

“In order to protect your reservation,” the letter informed her, “it is necessary for us to process a non-refundable advance deposit equivalent to a two nights stay… see Washington Post article.

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