01.17.13

JOINT CONGRESSIONAL COMMITTEE ON INAUGURAL CEREMONIES ISSUES INAUGURAL ADVISORY

 

Washington, DC - In the remaining days before the 2013 Presidential Inaugural Ceremonies, the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies (JCCIC) is issuing the following advisory to help people who plan to attend the swearingin ceremonies. The following is a special alert for people who will have tickets to the swearingin, but may have questions about getting to and from the event that morning. Because of the large crowds and the potential for inclement weather, those people with special needs are advised to pay careful attention to these details.

 

TIMING

 

While the actual swearingin will take place shortly before noon, the formal program begins at 11:30 AM while the musical prelude and seating will begin much earlier. Security checkpoints will open for ticketed guests at 7:00 AM, and the committee advises arriving no later than 9:00 AM to ensure that you are through the checkpoints by the time the program begins. Screening will end when the program begins at 11:30 AM and late arrivals will not be able to enter the grounds.

 

GETTING TO THE SWEARINGIN

 

Getting to the swearingin ceremonies that morning will be very difficult because of the large crowds.  In addition to the 250,000 ticketed guests, hundreds of thousands or more people are expected to view the Inaugural Ceremonies from the National Mall between 4th Street and the Lincoln Memorial, along with hundreds of thousands of others who plan on watching the Inaugural parade down Pennsylvania Avenue.

 

We recommend planning ahead, but also caution that any plans made in advance should be doublechecked in the days and hours prior to the event in case of changes to transportation schedules, street and other closures, and other factors that may impact your travel plans. We also recommend developing backup plans in case your original travel plans need to be changed at the last minute.

 

A security perimeter will be established around the U.S. Capitol and the parade route on or before January 21, 2013. Street closures throughout Washington, D.C., will make traveling by car or taxi very difficult.

 

The JCCIC has created a mobile web app for individuals attending the 57 th Inaugural Ceremonies. In order to access the new mobile web app individuals must go to  www.inaugural.senate.gov. They will be asked to "allow" the website to use their current location. When the individual selects "allow" they will be able to utilize the new mobile web app. The mobile web app includes GPS technology that will direct ticket holders to the appropriate gate based on the color of the ticket they hold.

 

JCCIC encourages individuals with a ticket, or those coming to the National Mall to view the ceremonies without a ticket, to visit  www.inaugural.senate.gov on their mobile device. The mobile web app will carry a live feed of the ceremonies, as well as additional information about the Inauguration for individuals around the country who do not travel to Washington.

 

UPTODATE INAUGURAL INFORMATION

 

The JCCIC will be providing uptodate information through our Twitter account during the Inaugural Ceremonies. We recommend individuals attending the Inaugural Ceremonies follow the JCCIC Twitter announcements at  @jccic2013. JCCIC will be announcing time sensitive information such as when the gates open, when Inaugural performers begin, when the president and vice president are arriving on the platform.

 

The Secret Service will also be providing important information throughout the Inaugural Ceremonies. We recommend individuals attending the Inaugural Ceremonies follow the Secret Service announcements at  @SecretService. The Secret Service will be announcing road closures, travel alerts and other important Inaugural details on Twitter.

 

To see all Inaugural related material on Twitter, please use  #inaug2013.     

 

The National Parks Service will be providing a text messaging service. In order to receive free emergency alerts and public notifications regarding the Inauguration, text "INAUGURATION" to 888777. Text messaging fees may apply according to your cellular plan. 

 

FOLLOWING ARE RECOMMENDATIONS ON HOW TO GET TO THE SWEARINGINCEREMONIES:

 

Within 2 Miles of the U.S. Capitol

 

For those people who will be staying within 2 Miles of the U.S. Capitol, walking to the swearingin ceremonies will be the most reliable method of reaching the ticketed seated and standing areas. Be sure to carefully plan your return trip as well - it won't be possible to cross the Pennsylvania Avenue parade route, except at designated points, and Metro will be extremely crowded. 

 

Beyond 2 Miles of the U.S. Capitol

 

Use public transportation to get you as close as possible to the U.S. Capitol and walk from there.

D.C.'s subway system will be running rushhour service all day. Be prepared to wait for space on a train for long periods of time, during which you will have to stand in close proximity to several thousand people.  Many Metro escalators will be closed due to crowding and individuals will need to climb Metro stairs or wait to utilize the small number of elevators at Metro stations.

 

The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) plans to run Metrobuses on Inauguration Day.  Check its website,  www.wmata.com, for information regarding routes and schedules.  As with any other travel planning for January 21, please allow extra time and prepare a backup plan.

 

AMTRAK  www.amtrak.com, and regional commuter trains,  Virginia Railway Express (VRE)  www.vre.org and  MARC (Maryland) Commuter Train  http://mta.maryland.gov/marctrain will be operating reserved trains on special schedules and are expected to sell out well in advance of January 21.  Please visit their websites for more information.

 

ACCESSIBILITY FOR PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES

 

There will be no vehicular access or parking in the areas around the Capitol on January 21, 2013.  This includes vehicles with special disability license plates or tags.  While there will be locations outside the perimeter of the Capitol that will be designated as dropoff points for persons with disabilities, traffic conditions and restrictions may make reaching these dropoff locations extremely difficult. 

 

As noted above, public transportation is expected to be running at rushhour capacity and WMATA has informed us that while Metro Access will operate for its regular customers, they do not expect to be able to provide pickups for people after events.

 

There will be designated areas for people with disabilities in each of the ticketed seating areas on the Capitol grounds; however these areas are limited in size and available on a firstcome firstserved basis.  Persons in wheelchairs or utilizing walkers should be aware that they will need to move across bumpy surfaces, grassy areas, and possible icy areas (depending on the weather).

 

OTHER IMPORTANT CONSIDERATIONS

 

The weather in Washington in January is usually quite cold and often rainy or snowy. Please think carefully about whether you can stand outside in cold weather in a large crowd for up to six hours, and whether you are ready for long delays getting home afterwards.  Bathroom access will be extremely limited once individuals enter ticketed areas. Everyone in attendance at the Inaugural Ceremonies should be prepared for limited facilities and long lines.

 

There are no assigned sections in the seated or standing areas. If individuals leave a seat or a specific location they should not expect to be able to return.  

 

Regardless of the weather conditions, umbrellas will not be permitted in the ticketed areas.  Other prohibited items include, but are not limited to:

Firearms and ammunition (either real or simulated), Explosives of any kind (including fireworks), Knives, blades, or sharp objects (of any length), including pocket or hand tools, such as the "Leatherman", Mace and/or pepper spray, Sticks, poles, or sign supports, Packages, backpacks, large bags, suitcases, Thermoses or coolers, Strollers, Umbrellas, Laser pointers, Signs or posters, Animals (other than service animals), Alcoholic beverages, Aerosol sprays, Glass containers, Air horns, NonADA portable chairs, Other items that may pose a threat to the security of the event as determined by and at the discretion of the security screeners.

Bring with you any medications that you need because there will be very long delays in getting to and from events.

 

The Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies is responsible for the oversight and planning of the Presidential Inauguration and related ceremonies on the U.S. Capitol grounds.

 

The Joint Committee was authorized by S. Con. Res. 35, which passed the Senate on March 1, 2012, and the House on March 5 th.  Members of JCCIC are appointed by the Vice President and the Speaker of the House. In accordance with tradition, the Senate representatives on JCCIC are Majority Leader Harry Reid, Rules Committee Chairman Charles E. Schumer, and Rules Committee Ranking Member Lamar Alexander.  The House members of JCCIC are Speaker John A. Boehner, Majority Leader Eric Cantor, and Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi.

 

S. Con. Res. 35 established the date of the 2013 Inauguration as Monday, January 21, 2013, since January 20, 2013 falls on a Sunday.  This is the seventh time in U.S. history that the constitutionally mandated Inauguration date has fallen on a Sunday.  The last time was for President Ronald Reagan's second Inauguration in 1985.  When this occurs, the public ceremonies traditionally are held on Monday.

 

In addition, January 21, 2013 is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. It will be the second time that this federal holiday has coincided with a Presidential Inauguration. The first was President Bill Clinton's second Inauguration in 1997.

 

You can follow the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies on our Facebook page at  http://www.facebook.com/#!/JCCIC, on Twitter at  @jccic2013 and utilize our new mobile web app at www.inaugural.senate.gov.



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