Reporters Discuss Getting From Swearing-in to Parade, More
Post Inauguration Watch bloggers David Nakamura and Nikita R. Stewart were online Monday, Jan. 12 at noon ET to discuss all the events, hype and hoopla surrounding the swearing-in of Barack Obama and how the city is preparing for Jan. 20. Here are some of the questions they answered:
U Street: Still no information on when the tickets for the Youth or Neighborhood Balls will go on sale? It's 8 days away...
Nikita Stewart: We know. We know. When we know, you'll know.
Washington, D.C.: I've been very lucky so far in my attempts to see the inaugural celebration in person. I have swearing-in tickets (congressional - assume they're far away) and parade tickets (bleachers, obtained in the instant they went on sale).
With tickets in hand, do you think there's any chance I can make both events? I know everyone has advised not to try for both, but I really, really want to make this work.
Nikita Stewart: Try pushing your way through the crowd. There is some wiggle room. Obama will eat lunch with Congress after the swearing-in. The parade is set to start at 2:30. Bleacher seats that are not filled by the parade's start will be opened to the public for free so you could lose your seat if you don't get there on time.
Salt Lake City: If I'm going to the swearing in, and then to the bathroom (long lines/waits?) and therefore can't stake out a Parade viewing spot in advance of its start, where do you recommend trying for a last-minute viewing spot? I don't mind hoofing it a mile or more if it means I will have a better chance to see something. I guess my last question is: Where's the last parade viewing spot to fill up?
David Nakamura: Hi Salt Lake -- it's not going to be easy to get a spot along the parade route. Crowds will be lined up hours in advance. However, the Newseum is hosting a viewing event in its building, which has a great view of the parade. The Newsuem's 4,000 tickets sold out already, but I am told that the building will likely sell a number of day-of, walkup tickets depending on capacity. So you might check that out - and you can be warm while watching.
Baltimore: Will Obama and company still make a major stop in Baltimore now that our mayor has been indicted? I notice that the specific plans have yet to be announced, just a few days before the scheduled train trip.
Nikita Stewart: As far as we know, the indictment has not changed the travel plans. The Presidential Inaugural Committee has not announced the details about any of the stops, which also include Philadelphia and Wilmington.
Bethlehem, Pa.: Okay, I scored one of the 5,000 bleacher seat tickets along the parade route. The official advice is to get to your place ASAP, the earlier the better (gates open at 7 a.m.; the parade starts 2:30 p.m.). Question: Will the swearing-in ceremony be visible from the bleachers or will there be big screens set up?
David Nakamura: The swearing-in almost certainly will not be able to be seen live from the parade route and the best guess for a great spot is: the earlier the better. No list of the 22 Jumbotron locations yet, but we expect there will be one before Jan. 20 so stay tuned.
Memphis, Tenn: Is the inauguration going to be broadcast live online anywhere?
washingtonpost.com: This very Web site, for starters.
David Nakamura: Looks like your first stop should be washingtonpost.com, where we'll have live video coverage online.
Christopher Dean Hopkins
January 12, 2009; 1:46 PM ET
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