Excerpts: Live Discussion With Post Inauguration Reporters
Post reporters David Nakamura and Nikita Stewart were online earlier today to discuss inauguration planning and take questions from readers. Here are some of their answers.
NW Washington: Have you heard what time the Lincoln Memorial concert is scheduled for on Sun., January 18th, or any other details about this event besides Springsteen's apparent performance? With 500,000 people expected, will Metro run rush hour service?
On a related note, I'm a bit surprised by how slowly inaugural event information has been released, what with the inauguration now less than two weeks away. Obviously it is a monumental undertaking but does this concern you?
David Nakamura: Hi NW -- Indeed the Presidential Inaugural Committee has been slow to release information. They appear to roll out announcements bit-by-bit each morning around 7 a.m., but not always with complete information. For example, how to buy tickets to the inaugural balls they announced yesterday (more on this later). As for the Springsteen concert, we only have heard that he's confirmed for the welcome event on Sunday, Jan. 18. Metro has not announced rush hour service for Sunday as of this time. It WILL run rush hour service from 4 a.m. through 9 p.m. on Jan. 20, inauguration day.
Arlington, Va.: We plan on walking, instead of taking the Metro. What bridges will be open to pedestrians?
David Nakamura: Hi Arlington -- The Secret Service is scheduled to make this announcement at 3 p.m. today. We'll have complete coverage online immediately following the announcement, as well as in tomorrow's newspaper. We're hearing that at least one Virginia bridge will be open to pedestrians and rumors are that it's Memorial Bridge. But that's far from certain. Stay tuned.
Alexandria, Va.: What are the planned activities for the welcome event at the Lincoln Memorial on the Sunday preceding the inauguration? I'm contemplating attending the event as a manageable alternative to the actual inauguration day festivities.
Nikita Stewart: When we know, you'll know. Right now, we just don't know. But HBO now has the exclusive rights to televise the event so it must be major. The Post's Lena Sun has a source who is sure that Bruce Springsteen will perform. When President Clinton put on a similar show for his first inauguration, Michael Jackson and Diana Ross were headliners. We don't have an exact time. However, we understand from sources that it will be in the afternoon, possibly starting at 1:30.
Ilwaco, Washington state: Any word on tickets for the kid's concert on Jan. 19?
Also, does it make sense to try to get from the swearing-in to the parade?
Nikita Stewart: No word on tickets to that kids ball. No word on who's performing. The Presidential Inaugural Committee has been tight-lipped. Everyday is a surprise. As far as trying to get to the parade, Mayor Adrian M. Fenty said from the beginning, when estimates were hyped at 4 million people, that specatators would likely have to choose between going to the swearing-in and going to the parade. Remember that the JumboTron is your friend. You can stand right where you are and see the day unfold.
Silver Spring: Will it be possible to get to Reagan National on inaugeration day? I have a flight leaving at noon, and I'll be coming from Frederick. Thanks for any advice!
Nikita Stewart: Leave extra early. Between the traffic and detours, you don't want to leave anything to chance.
Christopher Dean Hopkins
January 7, 2009; 1:07 PM ET
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