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Inauguration meetup planning inside!
November 5, 2008 4:52 PM   Subscribe

Hear Ye: Exploratory committee for the formation of an Inauguration Day meetup in/around DC.

WHEREAS there are many MeFites in the DC and surrounding area, and
WHEREAS these MeFites are likely super happy right now about the election of Barack Obama to President of the United States, and
WHEREAS many more MeFites, their families and their friends may be making their way to DC to mark the historic occasion of the inauguration of Barack Obama,
I hereby request we start planning a huge meetup for this momentous day.

All in favor, say AYE.

Disclaimer: I am making this request from far away from the center of activity. I have plane tix and a place to stay for the duration, but have been out of touch w/ the DC scene for long enough that I don't have any great suggestions for a meetup location, especially a spot for a meetup that may potentially be pretty large. Locals, please hope me! I'll do whatever I can from my faraway location to make it happen once we settle on a time and place.

Also: If we can somehow assemble as a group for the parade/big moment itself, that would be awesome too, but perhaps a bit more of a challenge to organize.
posted by brain cloud to MetaFilter Gatherings at 4:52 PM (237 comments total) 13 users marked this as a favorite

I'm there. No way I'm missing this.
posted by fourcheesemac at 5:02 PM on November 5, 2008


Absolutely. I vote for a meetup the night before, possibly followed by an official MeFi spot to gather for the event itself.
posted by EarBucket at 5:26 PM on November 5, 2008


I vote for a meetup the night before

That works too! Inauguration day itself may be hectic for a lot of people, and I have no doubt about how ever-lovin crowded DC proper is going to be on the day of.

Right now I guess we should just gauge what the interest is from those who plan to be in town. Date and time are flexible at this point.

FWIW I would be greatly aided by a meetup spot with a short walk to a Metro stop. Preferably red line, but not a dealbreaker if it is another line.
posted by brain cloud at 5:35 PM on November 5, 2008


My college roommate and I are trying to see if we can swing ball tickets to something. We're in for a meetup (and might actually make it this time).
posted by sperose at 5:42 PM on November 5, 2008


I'm probably in.

& if anybody is looking for a place to stay for a night or two, memail me.

posted by and hosted from Uranus at 6:06 PM on November 5, 2008


I'll do my best to be at a meetup. I live just over a mile from the Capitol, but I have family coming in, so I might not be fully in charge of my time. Not a chance that I'll miss the inauguration, though.

I actually have a spot in mind from where to watch the inauguration, the north side of the intersection of Constitution and Pennsylvania, NW. It's where I watched the first Bush inauguration and the Reagan funeral. There's a big plaza there, and a monument with steps to climb so shorter audience members can see. I didn't get there super early for either of those events, but this one will likely be significantly more crowded.
posted by MrMoonPie at 6:14 PM on November 5, 2008 [3 favorites]


We'll be there, in Bethesda. (Red Line, brain cloud!)
posted by headnsouth at 6:20 PM on November 5, 2008


We'll be there, in Bethesda. (Red Line, brain cloud!)

Friendship Heights, repazzent!
posted by brain cloud at 6:28 PM on November 5, 2008


The Clinton inaugurations were a lot of fun (I lived in DC at the time).

This one should be an even bigger blast.

ZOMG harDCore!!!1!
posted by bardic at 7:06 PM on November 5, 2008


The husband and I would be interested in coming up for this! Need to ask off work and make some plans. Meet-up night before would be good for us. We could fly up Sunday and head out on Wednesday or something like that.
posted by dog food sugar at 7:22 PM on November 5, 2008


Seconding a metro-accessible meetup the night before.
posted by djb at 7:31 PM on November 5, 2008


Third the Red Line suggestion. But my bar suggestion is a few stops away from Red on Yellow/Green. Busboys and Poets seems particularly apt for a meetup, theme-wise. (Washington Post, Wikipedia, TheHill.com). I've only been there once but it had an extremely intellectual progressive vibe without that sense of disconnected gentrification I usually get at such places. It is, in short, Obama in bar and bookstore form. I have not been in the DC area long enough to know what all goes down on Inauguration Day, but I suspect U St will be jubilant Monday and Tuesday with MLK Day preceding the Inauguration. I'm not the only one who will have this particular idea so the down side to this is that I expect the place will be packed to the gills.

Looking at their webpage, I see that William Ayers is speaking there is a few weeks, on education. Heh.
posted by Tehanu at 7:33 PM on November 5, 2008


I am so incredibly there.
posted by gsteff at 7:57 PM on November 5, 2008


We'd really like to go, and can get down there. If anyone knows of an inexpensive place to stay or has a spare room, please let me know. I'd love to be present for this and to celebrate with MeFites...MeFi has been a huge part of this election for me, and it seems so appropriate to celebrate with you folks.
posted by Miko at 8:03 PM on November 5, 2008


I would consider traveling across the country to attend the Metafilter Inaugural Ball. You are the people who got me through the Bush years.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 8:07 PM on November 5, 2008


I'd love to be there can't make it. Nothing to do with anything, but I was glancing at the deleted posts blog and when I saw this I thought "Fuck! Did I post that last night?"
posted by marxchivist at 8:16 PM on November 5, 2008


DC hotels are expensive in an average week, and from what I am hearing, people book up for Inauguration really far in advance. That said, if there are still rooms, L'Enfant Plaza Hotel is conveniently located downtown and is relatively cheap.
posted by Tehanu at 8:18 PM on November 5, 2008


Scratch that suggestion-- I should've searched them first. No rooms available according to their site.
posted by Tehanu at 8:21 PM on November 5, 2008


HELL YES
posted by exogenous at 8:25 PM on November 5, 2008


AYE! DaShiv and Space Kitty and I were making (admittedly drunken) plans on this very score last night. Anyone got a few spaces on a couch or floor? Barring that, if any locals have any recs for reasonable motels accessible to transportation within some sort of viable radius (15 miles? 30? Sorry, I haven't been to DC since the abortion rights march in 1988), that would be great, too. Although I suspect there's not a single room to be rented at this point...
posted by scody at 8:25 PM on November 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


L'Enfant Plaza Hotel's booked up, and so is my budget favorite ace-in-the-hole, the scruffy-but-proud Hotel Harrington.
posted by Miko at 8:42 PM on November 5, 2008


Hmmm...I've been thinking about taking a trip to Washington DC. It'll be nice to walk around and not have to be wearing my Boy Scout uniform. (I went there on the way to the 89 Jamboree.)
posted by ColdChef at 9:04 PM on November 5, 2008 [2 favorites]


I am going to do my damnedest to get there from Nevada.

I've never seen DC before, and Jan 20th, 2008 seems like a perfect day to do so.

I'll let all of you handle the details of the meetup, just make sure cold beer is available.
posted by clearly at 10:52 PM on November 5, 2008


I'm from California, but I made it out there in '05 to turn my back on Bush and I'll be there in '09 for a big ol' HOWDY to Obama.
posted by bigtex at 11:40 PM on November 5, 2008


I don't have a spare room, but anyone's welcome to crash on my waterboard couch!

Seriously I'd like to help out in some way, I've been lurking here for a while and you all made politics much less annoying than usual this year with your insights.

My friend has a house on capitol hill with a couple of empty rooms, I'll see if he'd be down with converting one of them into an air mattress dorm or something.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 3:37 AM on November 6, 2008


All I ask is that ColdChef wears his boyscout uniform.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 3:38 AM on November 6, 2008 [3 favorites]


I've been to Busboys and Poets a couple of times during the campaign for debates, and it's been packed. I doubt we'd be able to get seating, especially for shifting and uncertain number of mefites.

How about tapas in Gallery Place? There's a La Tasca right off the red line here.
posted by anotherpanacea at 4:59 AM on November 6, 2008


Another vote for a meetup the night before. Or even afternoon? It's MLK day (appropriate, no?) so many folks will have the day off.

The whole town is going to be a madhouse. Anyplace hip (Busboys and Poets) is going to be packed. I can't think of a better alternative off the top of my head though...
posted by JoanArkham at 7:33 AM on November 6, 2008


Ooooh. This sounds exciting and awesome. I'll for sure consider it!
posted by Stewriffic at 7:57 AM on November 6, 2008


Glover Park, holla!

You guys, metro is going to be bedlam. Particularly the red line, where metro trains go to die. Depending on where you're staying, it might be easier to walk.
posted by orrnyereg at 8:34 AM on November 6, 2008


Also, memail me if you need a place to crash (and don't mind sharing a futon with a feeble-minded tabby cat).
posted by orrnyereg at 8:44 AM on November 6, 2008


AYE!
posted by cowbellemoo at 10:13 AM on November 6, 2008


My husband and I, along with some other friends, are going to be there. Trying to hit up our congress critters for tix, but we'll see where that gets us.
posted by Medieval Maven at 12:46 PM on November 6, 2008


Ironically, those of us who live in DC have no congress critters to hit up. At least not those with votes... maybe I'll see if our resident bad ass Eleanor Holmes Norton can score some.
posted by exogenous at 1:32 PM on November 6, 2008


Maybe we meet up on the mall with a huge MeFi banner?
posted by JoanArkham at 1:48 PM on November 6, 2008


I'm so there.
posted by zennie at 3:46 PM on November 6, 2008


How would this work, exactly? My wife and I would love to drive up to D.C., and may just be able to arrange it - would anyone be willing to put us up?

Is it going to be gridlock throughout the entire city on the big day?
posted by odinsdream at 6:03 PM on November 6, 2008


Is it going to be gridlock throughout the entire city on the big day?

It's probably fair to say that "automobile" is your worst option for travelling in DC on that day, yes.
posted by brain cloud at 6:19 PM on November 6, 2008


Unless your car flies.
posted by Tehanu at 6:43 PM on November 6, 2008 [3 favorites]


Maybe we meet up on the mall with a huge MeFi banner?

I plan to find a good spot on the parade route and, if signs are allowed, wave a huge FIRED UP & READY TO GO banner.
posted by Tehanu at 6:53 PM on November 6, 2008


I'll have a place in NoVa if anybody can't find a hotel room.
posted by empath at 8:05 PM on November 6, 2008


As far as meet-up places, I'd almost suggest finding a place out in the suburbs that won't be completely insane. Maybe in Northern VA or in the Rockville/Bethesda area.
posted by empath at 8:07 PM on November 6, 2008


Maybe in Northern VA or in the Rockville/Bethesda area.

A sane suggestion. Up for that.
posted by brain cloud at 8:22 PM on November 6, 2008


Maybe in Northern VA or in the Rockville/Bethesda area.

A sane suggestion.


Not if you are already in DC and have to get out and then back in! Though I know there are a ton of great places out there, I think to accomodate all the folks that want to be in DC for the innagauration and not near DC we should do it as close to the action as possible. I like the Gallery Place suggestion above as mutiple lines accomodates the most people. It's also (in case the metro is too swamped) close enough to walk from Union Station for those arriving by train and Greyhound. Plus its where the Chinatown to Chinatown and Bolt busses dump off.

I'd offer a couch/guest room but, I shit you not, my elderly parents have already called it. I also have an active toddler who likes to get up at 5 or 6 in the morning and that's only fun for grandma anyway.
posted by Pollomacho at 5:03 AM on November 7, 2008


Isn't being part of the "completely insane" atmosphere the whole point?
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 5:55 AM on November 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Oooh, how about the SAAM courtyard? Afternoon of the 19th?

I think it may be too crazy to try and meet on the 20th.
posted by JoanArkham at 6:14 AM on November 7, 2008


(We can all enjoy the "completely insane" part in smaller groups or on our own the next day.)
posted by JoanArkham at 6:15 AM on November 7, 2008


Isn't being part of the "completely insane" atmosphere the whole point?

Yes. This middle-aged introverted crowd-hating mom says if we're going to do this thing, then let's do it right. Suburbs, schmuburbs.

Although whatever you guys agree on is fine with me & I'll see you there. I'll be the one in the Obama t-shirt.
posted by headnsouth at 6:16 AM on November 7, 2008


I just realized the 19th is MLK day so I'll have off work then too.
God help my liver and sense of dignity.

JoanA, I like that suggestion except there are no beers in the museum (and they get cranky if you try to sneak in a few). (Or so I've heard).
posted by Potomac Avenue at 6:32 AM on November 7, 2008


Actually they do sell beer and wine there! (Although at art museum prices...but it goes to a good cause! And Smithsonian members get a discount.)
posted by JoanArkham at 6:36 AM on November 7, 2008


No idea if I'll be able to make it, but if I can I should have a few spots in my car for NYC mefites who'd like a ride.
posted by Skorgu at 6:47 AM on November 7, 2008


I don't know if I could even handle this comet-collision of a pairing, but there is a lot of speculation that Bruce Springsteen might play Obama's inauguration concert/ball. He's working on a new album to be released in mid-January, possibly coinciding with the inauguration. It'll feature a song he's been playing at his Obama rallies, Working on a Dream (borrowed mp3 findable here, I think).

Like I said, that's a lot of awesomeness to take in one evening. Springsteen shows nearly kill me all by themselves. Add Obama, and I may approach near-fatal levels of gritty,embattled but still shining hope.
posted by Miko at 7:01 AM on November 7, 2008


The America restaurant in Union Station might work out for a meetup. They were recently able to handle a party of 14 for me on less than 24 hours notice on a Friday night.

During the inauguration I'll be hosting some non-MeFi visitors from out of town, so I can't commit to taking charge here.
posted by exogenous at 8:41 AM on November 7, 2008


there is a lot of speculation that Bruce Springsteen might play Obama's inauguration concert/ball

That would be the concert and not one of the many balls that will be occuring the night of the 20th. The new President shuffles all over town from invitation only black tie ball to black tie ball all night, but he/she starts the night at a public function on the Mall. That is what they are talking about there with the Boss playing for the Boss.
posted by Pollomacho at 8:53 AM on November 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'm thinking that if we're going to go to a restaurant, we may want to firm up plans and make a reservation ASAP.
posted by EarBucket at 9:07 AM on November 7, 2008


But how can we firm up plans and make a reservation when we have no idea how many people are actually coming? It sounds almost like maybe we want to rent a room in a restaurant that might fit anywhere between 20-40 (or more?) people since numbers could easily change depending on who can come, but that starts getting pricey.

NortonDC and I live in Arlington, fairly close to Ballston, and have two spare bedrooms and an air mattress; however we're not really walkable from the metro and I'll be 8 months pregnant (if all goes well!) at the inauguration, so we're not totally positive we can put people up. But we're trying to work it out and will report back!
posted by onlyconnect at 9:16 AM on November 7, 2008


I am trying to talk Mrs shawnstring to do it, so tenatively count 2. I would be coming in via metro as well. I like the gallery place idea (is that the one thats near the MCI Verizon Center?
posted by ShawnString at 12:19 PM on November 7, 2008


I live in MD so I'd rather not venture into NoVa for an outing. But since I am local and have both those days off (just confirmed), I'm somewhat flexible. I agree that DC seems best though. I like the Smithsonian idea, and Union Station is convenient for me.

I want to be there for the crazy, myself.
posted by Tehanu at 12:44 PM on November 7, 2008


Mostly, I think it's a little too early to make firm plans--no one knows ticketing details, and many of us who live close by don't know what kind of space we'll have to share. I know that I won't be able to commit to anything for a few weeks, at least.

From what I hear, hotels are booked solid, or are seriously gouging. I bet meetup venues are the same way--any place that's taking reservations this far in advance will likely need an exact head count, and might very well want a big deposit. Probably best to call around a few places a week or so ahead, find somewhere that's not reserved, and just show up.

Anyone who works for the Federal government has Monday and Tuesday off, and I'd guess that nearly everyone else in the region will, too, so a Monday late afternoon/early evening meetup would probably work for most folks.

Just my thoughts at this point. Again, too early for me to make plans.
posted by MrMoonPie at 2:18 PM on November 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Tickets for the swearing in are going to Congressional reps, who get to distribute them. Contact your House Rep and Senators to try to get tickets. As of yesterday they didn't know yet how many they would be getting.

I didn't think we were talking about any ticketed events though. Rather, the parade and maybe any other event that doesn't require tickets.
posted by Tehanu at 2:50 PM on November 7, 2008


Neat events link, Tehanu. That site is actually a fascinating and well-put-together look at the traditions of Inauguration Day, with plenty of historic photos and trivia (nail driving ceremony? Neato).

Procession to the Capital: By tradition, the outgoing President accompanies the President-Elect to the Capitol for the swearing-in ceremony. This tradition has endured, with few exceptions, since 1837, when Martin van Buren and Andrew Jackson rode together in a carriage made of wood taken from the USS Constitution...


Joke A: ...But never before has the President's carriage been followed by a full New Orleans funeral band.

Joke B: ...Outgoing President Bush, in a witty nod to the 1837 tradition, will ride in a carriage cushioned with tiny confetti paper shreds taken from the US Constitution.

But seriously. We've requested swearing-in tickets from our reps' and Senators' offices, and will just have to see if that bears any fruit. I think it's unlikely, but you never know. If not, just being present for the processions would be great.

As far as a meetup, I agree that a Monday evening one makes sense, or perhaps Tuesday evening for those who remain in town, since I suspect most of us will not be invited to any inaugural balls (though I'm sure a few MeFites may be among the assemblage).
posted by Miko at 3:37 PM on November 7, 2008


OK, from what I'm hearing, a meeting place in DC works best for everyone, and that's fine with me. I think the main thing is just to get a fix on how many of us are interested & who has plans to be in DC. The one thing that gives me pause is the possibility that the only way we'll be able to get this done is to reserve in advance (at great expense) a spot in a bar or restaurant, which might leave someone on the hook for a deposit.

I also agree that a meetup on Monday afternoon or evening is the best way to go. My gut feeling is that the afternoon is more realistic than the evening, if the group is large (and please let it be large, that would be so cool!)

I still have every intention of being on the ground somewhere near the action on Tuesday, but the chances of my getting tix to a cordoned-off area are looking increasingly bleak. I don't care, I just want to bask in the Obamaness.

I would offer anyone who needed it a place to crash if I had one to offer, but I'll be at my boyfriend's, who shares a small (small (small)) house with 2 other people and more crawling pets than I can count and zero place for parking to boot. I wish I still lived in the area, because I would gladly throw my doors open and pack people to the rafters if I could. There are so many out-of-town Mefites who I just know would give anything to be in Washington for this.
posted by brain cloud at 4:42 PM on November 7, 2008


Anyone who works for the Federal government has Monday and Tuesday off, and I'd guess that nearly everyone else in the region will, too, so a Monday late afternoon/early evening meetup would probably work for most folks.

The OPM site says that federal employees only get Tuesday off. If that's the case, Monday afternoon might be less desirable.

I may be able to offer couch space, not sure yet.
posted by gsteff at 6:35 AM on November 8, 2008


And yeah, for any place downtown, we'll likely need to make reservations NOW NOW NOW. I'm willing to take care of that myself, including deposit if needed, once we've decided where and when.
posted by gsteff at 6:42 AM on November 8, 2008


The OPM site says that federal employees only get Tuesday off. If that's the case, Monday afternoon might be less desirable.

I interpreted that page to mean they get both days off.
posted by Tehanu at 8:47 AM on November 8, 2008


gsteff: But MLK Day is Monday the 19th (how apropos!), so the Fed employees actually will get a 2-day break, and non-Federal employees are likely to have Monday off, but not Tuesday as well.

And yeah, for any place downtown, we'll likely need to make reservations NOW NOW NOW. I'm willing to take care of that myself, including deposit if needed, once we've decided where and when.

That is an awesome and generous offer -- thank you gsteff! I'm gonna make a headcount post so we can get the ball rolling on picking a place that can fit our crowd.
posted by brain cloud at 9:13 AM on November 8, 2008


Meetup list so far (please correct me if I've put you in the wrong group, want off the list, etc.):

Definitely interested [23+]:

fourcheesemac
EarBucket
sperose
headnsouth
bardic
djb
Tehanu
gsteff
exogenous
bigtex
Potomac Avenue
anotherpanacea
JoanArkham
orrnyereg
cowbellmoo
Medieval Maven (+others?)
zennie
empath
Pollomacho
onlyconnect, NortonDC
brain cloud, Mr. brain cloud

Maybes [5]:

and hosted from Uranus
MrMoonPie
ColdChef
Stewriffic
ShawnString, Mrs. ShawnString

Pending travel plans / Need Lodging [9]:

dog food sugar
Miko
Slarty Bartfast
scody, DaShiv, Space Kitty
clearly
odinsdream
Skorgu
posted by brain cloud at 9:41 AM on November 8, 2008


Add me as a maybe. Would love to make it, but it's rare that I'm actually able to make it work out.
posted by Alt F4 at 10:53 AM on November 8, 2008


Depending on where the meetup is, my teenagers will be with me. We left DC in 2003 after 9/11, anthrax, snipers, and the unwelcome end of dozens of peace walks around the Capitol as barricades and fences went up. This is a homecoming of sorts for us, and the hope I (finally) feel is more about them and their future than it is about me & mine.
posted by headnsouth at 1:31 PM on November 8, 2008


My friend should be in the maybe group, since we haven't finalized our plans yet. (I'll definitely be there though.)
posted by sperose at 2:39 PM on November 8, 2008


you can put me and Mrs ShawnString in the definitely interested list
posted by ShawnString at 4:32 PM on November 8, 2008


I interpreted that page to mean they get both days off.

The fed govt tends to be pretty free with days off, so I think most people that want the day off will be able to get it.
posted by empath at 7:55 PM on November 8, 2008


It will be nice to go to downtown to cheer the president's motorcade this time instead of booing it.

posted by empath at 7:57 PM on November 8, 2008


I'd love to do this, and I'd love to have somewhere to crash with my wife.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 9:29 PM on November 8, 2008


Put me down as a maybe!
posted by azarbayejani at 9:48 PM on November 8, 2008


I'm there. My wife and I live right beside the Capitol. No we do not have bed space for you. But wherever you want to meet that's Metro accessible sounds good.
posted by brownpau at 10:32 PM on November 8, 2008


Mrs. Optamystic and I are planning to make the trip over from London. Still working on the logistics, but add 2 more strong maybes.
posted by Optamystic at 12:35 AM on November 9, 2008


Put me down as a maybe. (Um, this would be a hell of a first meet-up for my little lurker self to attend.) I'm in the MD suburbs (near the Shady Grove end of the red line) and may be able to put a few people up -- I have a spare room with a bed and an air mattress -- but I couldn't guarantee anything right now, since it's possible we'll have other friends looking for a place to stay for the event.
posted by alyxstarr at 7:15 AM on November 9, 2008 [1 favorite]



AYE!!!

I'm in the definitely category. I'm from the San Francisco Area and my friend and I already got plane tickets. We are staying with friends in Vienna, VA (last stop on the Metro) and will be in town from the 15th-23rd. Looking forward to meeting all of you.
posted by trixare4kids at 2:26 PM on November 9, 2008


That site is actually a fascinating and well-put-together look at the traditions of Inauguration Day

Departure of the Outgoing President. Sweet.
posted by kirkaracha at 5:47 PM on November 9, 2008


Sometimes it's a nice thing to live and work in the DC Area. I'm taking the day off from work to watch the festivities. I live in Laurel, MD, so I'm only approx 20 miles from the center of town.

I don't have any floor or couch space that isn't spoken for... sorry. Old hippies don't die, they just wander around visiting other old hippies! My house was Grand Central Station for several anti-inauguration parties in years past. This will be one of the few joyous celebrations I've hosted.

I'd love to be included in any plans for the night before. I'll stay tuned.
posted by Corky at 5:52 PM on November 9, 2008


UPDATE 11/9: Meetup list so far - only changes from previous list have links (please correct me if I've put you in the wrong group, want off the list, etc.):

Definitely interested [30+]:

fourcheesemac
EarBucket
sperose
headnsouth (+teens)
bardic
djb
Tehanu
gsteff
exogenous
bigtex
Potomac Avenue
anotherpanacea
JoanArkham
orrnyereg
cowbellmoo
Medieval Maven (+others?)
zennie
empath
Pollomacho
onlyconnect, NortonDC
brain cloud, Mr. brain cloud
ShawnString, Mrs. ShawnString
brownpau, Mrs. brownpau
trixare4kids + friend
Corky

Maybes [10]:

and hosted from Uranus
MrMoonPie
ColdChef
Stewriffic
Alt F4
sperose's friend
azarbayejani
Optamystic, Mrs. Optamystic
alyxstarr


Pending travel plans / Need Lodging [11]:

dog food sugar
Miko
Slarty Bartfast
scody, DaShiv, Space Kitty
clearly
odinsdream
Skorgu
East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94, Mrs. EMRJKC'94
posted by brain cloud at 6:28 PM on November 9, 2008


Bought our tickets! So lurker husband robot rex and I can be moved into the definitely interested column!
posted by dog food sugar at 6:32 PM on November 9, 2008


I interpreted that page to mean they get both days off.

That Monday is MLK day, so it's a four day weekend for federal employees.

As the date approaches, I may be able to offer lodging in Northern Virginia, but I have to give first dibs to a few non-mefites before I'm sure the coast is clear.
posted by anotherpanacea at 6:26 AM on November 11, 2008


I would be completely down with a Monday evening meetup (especially one on the Red Line), but I'm pretty sure I have to work on Monday and I DEFINITELY have to work on Tuesday. Boo.

I (possibly) have small air mattress space, but I live in NoVa, about 25 minutes from DC - I am within walking distance of the metro, though.
posted by kerning at 7:54 PM on November 11, 2008


Please add me as a definite maybe! I'm gonna try my darndest to be there, maybe bring my brother.
posted by magstheaxe at 6:08 AM on November 12, 2008


For those who can't attend, there's a grassroots effort to observe the day by pledging to improve your community - see Brick by Brick.
posted by Miko at 6:29 AM on November 12, 2008


I work at the Smithsonian American Art Museum but I'm speaking in a totally unofficial capacity. The Kogod Courtyard is beautiful (named one of the seven modern architectural wonders of the world by Condé Nast's Traveler magazine), a public space, indoors (nice when it's cold outside) and there's free WiFi! There is a restaurant that does serve beer and wine. If you give me an approximate headcount I can alert the restaurant so they will be prepared for you.

The museum is open from 11:30 am to 7 pm daily (I think Monday would be a good day to meetup). Bonus for meeting here is that you can take a look at two Smithsonian museums, American Art and the National Portrait Gallery. And to add to the Inauguration theme, Lincoln's second Inaugural Ball was held in our building (the Lincoln Gallery which now houses our contemporary art collection).
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 7:12 AM on November 12, 2008 [3 favorites]


I haven't ever been there, but the Kogod Courtyard sounds like a godsend to me. It's about 3 blocks from the Federal Triangle metro stop (blue and orange lines), and if you're on the red line it's about 3 blocks from the Judiciary Square metro, PLUS Taken Outtacontext can help get us a place. And the space looks beautiful. Gets my vote!
posted by onlyconnect at 8:18 AM on November 12, 2008


sign me up for the Kogod Courtyard. plus its ridiculous close to the metro.
posted by ShawnString at 8:24 AM on November 12, 2008


So are we thinking maybe an afternoon/early evening thing then? Since the museum restaurant closes at 7.
posted by Tehanu at 8:25 AM on November 12, 2008


Here's a pic of the cafe menu.
posted by onlyconnect at 8:36 AM on November 12, 2008


It's right on top of the Gallery Place/Chinatown Metro (red, green, and yellow lines) and two blocks from the Metro Center Metro (red, orange, and blue).

And just to be clear, I don't need to get you a place there. It's a public space open to all. I would just alert the café staff so that they are prepared for an influx of people and you can get good service. ;-) BTW, it's not a formal restaurant. There are tables/seats in the courtyard to sit down and eat. But IMHO the food is good.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 8:37 AM on November 12, 2008


Here's a map of where we are. You can enter the building on either the F Street side (right across from the Spy Museum) or the G Street side.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 8:47 AM on November 12, 2008


Yay, SAAM! Even if all the art disappeared it would still be one of my favorite spaces in town. Another plus, with cafeteria-style food service we won't have some nightmare check-splitting situation.
posted by JoanArkham at 9:01 AM on November 12, 2008


Kogod is a very cool space, but is there enough seating if the 30+ people who are 'definitely interested' show up?
posted by anotherpanacea at 4:16 AM on November 13, 2008


It's a very informal setting, anotherpanacea. There are tables and chairs but there is also long marble "slab-like" seating. My thought is where will you find another large open heated area in DC? It may not be a perfect place but it certainly fits the bill.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 5:48 AM on November 13, 2008


AND it'd be all ages, so younger MeFites and those with kids could come. If the kids got bored, there's lots of room to mill around, little or no noise restraints, and the parents could take them on a wander (to see The Throne of the Third Heaven of the Nation's Millennium General Assembly, perhaps). $5 a beer is a little steep, but the setup (I've been only once, so correct me if I'm wrong--it's a cafeteria line, right?) doesn't require tipping. Very near Metro, so easy to get to, and if the party runs late, we could always head elsewhere afterwards.

Looks like a winner to me.
posted by MrMoonPie at 10:27 AM on November 13, 2008


So correct me if I am wrong people, so it looks like Mon Jan 19, late afternoonish (3pm?) at The Kogod Courtyard?
That all works for me.
posted by ShawnString at 11:50 AM on November 13, 2008


Yep, MrMoonPie, it's cafeteria style. But the chef is the same as the one from the National Museum of the American Indian. So if you're familiar with that food (very good) it's on that order.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 1:04 PM on November 13, 2008


I'm in!
posted by brain cloud at 7:05 PM on November 13, 2008


Mon Jan 19, late afternoonish (3pm?) at The Kogod Courtyard

Sounds great! (although Takenouttacontext, I doubt you'll need to give the cafe a heads-up --- I think we're all underestimating just how crowded DC is going to be over that four-day weekend.
posted by headnsouth at 7:24 PM on November 13, 2008


Something to keep in mind, is that a lot of museum spaces are going to be reserved for big events. I wouldn't count on this being available.

Just so we know what the premium is on event space in DC that week -- A ballroom in a hotel in Northern VA is $200,000 for a single night.
posted by empath at 7:26 PM on November 13, 2008


I can double-check to see if anything is scheduled Mon. Jan 19th. But if so, it's probably a public program and won't take up the entire courtyard. They usually don't close the courtyard when the museum is open. Generally, special events are in the evening after the museum has closed. Will report back...

headnsouth, it won't hurt to give the café a heads up and I'm glad to do it. Yes, it could be very crowded but I guess that's going to be part of the fun of being in DC that weekend.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 4:38 AM on November 14, 2008


Updated Information: I checked with our museum Public Affairs department and there is going to be an Inaugural event (a party for a couple alternate energy groups --they are not expecting Obama, btw) in the courtyard the evening of January 19. It looks like the courtyard will close at about 5 pm in order for the caterers to set up. But the courtyard should be open the rest of the day. So set your meetup time accordingly.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 7:40 AM on November 14, 2008


Maybe a bit earlier, then? Is it possible to get on the calendar, too?
posted by zennie at 8:51 AM on November 14, 2008


Heh, heh. Perhaps we can get you on the calendar if you pay to have an event there. Seriously, the calendar are for events that require a set ups, caterers, etc. and are more formal affairs (wouldn't want to have two different events on the same evening). I'm assuming this meetup is a bit less formal. ;-)
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 9:03 AM on November 14, 2008


Count me in as 75% sure of attending. I was planning to haul out and stand with the other proles on the Mall to watch the jumbo-tron... this seems like a 'funner' prospect, to be sure!
posted by wowbobwow at 9:46 AM on November 14, 2008


Can anyone spare a room, or couch, or some floor space for the night?
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 10:05 AM on November 14, 2008


OK. I was thinking more like just to give them a headsup, since it's possible there'll be a gangload of us descending on the vicinity.
posted by zennie at 11:35 AM on November 14, 2008


How many were you thinking, zennie? As I said, it's a public space. When I asked I was told the only heads up I might want to give is to the café staff. Nothing formal, just to let them know there might be a sudden influx.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 1:02 PM on November 14, 2008


Taken Outtacontext -- thank you so much for your footwork and insider info. Though it's WAY early to say, is there a possibility you can give the cafe' staff a heads up on 40 to 50 random Mefites showing up and invading their space for, say 2-3 hours on that afternoon? We've yet to firm up a time -- how does 2:30 sound to most/all? At the least, it's a starting point to our adventure on that Monday. If we get kicked out, we could move en masse or in groups to invade some other spot. (I promise to update the meetup list either tonight or tomorrow [Saturday 11/15]).

Also -- I will be rounding up those who need a crash place into a separate list! If y'all in DC/MD/VA can find a futon, bathtub, dog-bed, king-sized vibrating bed, etc to lend a hand to a stranger you would be a hero for a day, if not a week.
posted by brain cloud at 5:59 PM on November 14, 2008


I just stumbled in, late as usual. Depending on what else is happening that week I may make it to whatever shindig y'all throw down.
posted by arco at 8:12 PM on November 15, 2008


I propose we call it 2pm to 5pm. That could make a good window for the stragglers, the lost, and the traffic-bound. DC is is preparing for an unprecedented number of people to come into town for the inauguration, and they may run the trains on the Big Event schedule, but heaven only knows what travel times (by any mode) will look like that day.

If anyone wants to trade cell phone numbers for logistical purposes, I'm open to that. Could also help people join in an evening Mefite infiltration of the District if they couldn't get there earlier. :)

(hi arco ☺)
posted by zennie at 10:10 AM on November 16, 2008


Maybe here: I'd like to go to my first meetup, but will be hosting friends form out of town. (imagine!)
posted by kittyprecious at 6:25 PM on November 16, 2008


You're welcome brain cloud. Glad to be of MeFi assistance. No need to give me a headcount now. Let's check in after New Year's.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 6:53 AM on November 17, 2008


Ooh, this all sounds so good! I look forward to it.
posted by azarbayejani at 10:04 PM on November 17, 2008


omigod, if I get my US visa and flights sorted out, I could be there! In which case I would love somewhere to stay if anyone finds space on their porch, although I will also hit up family friends in Bethesda.

*hyperventilates* this could be the coolest ever way to begin living in the States
posted by jacalata at 4:13 AM on November 19, 2008


Looking for a place to stay? DC Mayor Fenty anticipates that people will camp on the Mall. FTFY.
posted by woodway at 5:47 AM on November 19, 2008


DC Mayor Fenty anticipates that people will camp on the Mall.

No, not quite. Fenty anticipates people will camp out, but camping is strictly forbidden on the Mall by the Federal law enforcement agencies that patrol there and the article doesn't say where he expects this camping to take place.
posted by Pollomacho at 8:02 AM on November 19, 2008


In local news, and by local I mean the crazy-town Examiner, Fenty is getting mocked for the 4 million number. Personally I think his estimate probably is too high, but the other numbers quoted to mock it make me think the truth will be somewhere inbetween.

This is good to keep in mind :

The mayor said visitors will have a difficult choice between getting the best possible views of the swearing-in or the parade.

"The parade route will be completely filled way before the inaugural speech even happens," said Fenty, who was a D.C. Council member in 2005, the most recent inauguration. "That's something people will have to think about, whether they want to see the parade firsthand or see the inaugural swearing-in and speech. You can't do both."


It may be of interest here that he is fond of fedoras.
posted by Tehanu at 8:19 AM on November 19, 2008


Tongue was in cheek, Pollomacho. Die hard fans have been willing to wait hours for concerts, sporting events, iPhones etc. and every year folks turn up hours ahead of time to get a prime location for the Fourth of July fireworks display downtown. So, considering the historic importance of the inauguration and Obama's track record of drawing huge crowds, it's conceiveable that some people might turn up as early as Nov 19th to stake out their viewing place on the Mall, in which case they'll be spending the night outside rather than in a hotel: QED FTFY ;-)
posted by woodway at 9:44 AM on November 19, 2008


Wait, I think I see people camping out on Pennsylvania Avenue already. No, just pedestrians. ;-)

It's a pretty sure thing that it will be cold, especially at night. Not the same as a balmy July evening. And I agree, it's either the Inaugural or the parade. I did both four years ago but it twasn't Obama. My feelings are to just enjoy the crowd and the moment. If your aim is to actually see the Obamas live think again. Don't know if he'll be walking the parade route. Secret Service may have other ideas. Bush was heavily fortified in 2004. I *think* I saw Laura Bush inside the limo but with that thick bullet proof glass it was hard to tell.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 11:47 AM on November 19, 2008


Yikes. I'm going to enter the lottery at work to see the parade from my building, but assuming I don't "win" I think I'm going to enjoy the pre-Inaugural meetup...and then watch the rest from my sofa the next day.
posted by JoanArkham at 12:13 PM on November 19, 2008


Oh, I understand Woodway, but those folks are going to awaken to the blunt end of a Park Police flashlight. You'll just have to trust me on this one.
posted by Pollomacho at 1:02 PM on November 19, 2008


I remember it being below zero for Reagan's second inauguration when I was a kid growing up in the DC suburbs. There's been snow, ice, blustery winds. Of course, Fenty is no Marion Barry. *wipes tear away*

It'll be interesting to see how early they close roads and enforce security perimeters around the Mall. IIRC for major events in the recent past such as the Million Man March, chartered buses left cities up and down the East Coast and from the Midwest at unholy hours, then offloaded people on the day of the event at satellite lots with Metro connections to the Mall. It's great how the Metro spokesman is quoted in the 18 Nov 08 WP article as saying, "If we can get the doors closed, we will move."
posted by woodway at 3:24 PM on November 19, 2008


The best view of any big event in DC is generally CSPAN or PBS. Especially in bad weather.

But this may be a year to be there just to be there.
posted by zennie at 8:35 PM on November 19, 2008


As a frequent public transit user, I encourage all you out of town people to buy these commemorative Metro cards while you're here. We should have ordered new cars to replace the oldest 1/3 or so of the fleet 6 years ago and can't afford to do it now.

As a fellow citizen, I encourage you to not fall for the hype. Also to walk to the left and stand to the right, for fuck's sake.
posted by Tehanu at 12:12 PM on November 20, 2008 [3 favorites]


You can move me (and my wife) to the Almost Definite group, thanks to orrnyereg for the lodgings!
posted by odinsdream at 12:21 PM on November 20, 2008


Rental rules relaxed for inauguration.
posted by exogenous at 1:16 PM on November 21, 2008


OMG, Mr. HotToddy just this afternoon surprised me with the most incredibly awesome anniversary gift ever, three days in NYC and then down to DC for the inauguration!!! He brilliantly bought plane tickets and hotel rooms back in October just on the faith that everything would turn out right and somehow managed to keep his mouth shut all through election night as I wept with joy (and the whole week after election night as I continued to weep with joy!). My mom is flying out to our house to watch our dogs while we're gone and everything!

So--but--we don't get into Dulles until 1:50 on the 19th. Does that mean we'll get there too late for the MeFi meetup? What do you think? There definitely wouldn't be time to go to the hotel first, so what could we do with our luggage in the meantime?
posted by HotToddy at 5:49 PM on November 23, 2008


I'm coming down from Baltimore for the 20th, but meeting folks....there are gonna be a lot of folks wandering around. Could be rough. I have house guests already, or I'd offer space. I hear that Balto hotels are sold out already.

Late afternoon on Monday might be good, though. My guests want to see more of DC than is going to be possible on Tues.
posted by QIbHom at 11:59 AM on November 24, 2008


If you plan to celebrate the historic inauguration on January 20th, 2009 in downtown Washington DC, remember to bring a camera, your patience and comfy shoes.
posted by woodway at 2:53 PM on November 24, 2008


So--but--we don't get into Dulles until 1:50 on the 19th. Does that mean we'll get there too late for the MeFi meetup?

That will land you at the beginning of rush-hour traffic. You could possibly still get there by 3:30-ish if you're taking your own cab (not the super shuttle). You could also take a flyer shuttle (not the super shuttle) or cab to the West Falls Church metro station and take the train from there, which ought to get you there by 3:30pm in a more economical way.

I would just drag the luggage along.
posted by zennie at 4:36 PM on November 24, 2008


I would just drag the luggage along.

I'm not sure you'll be able to bring your luggage into Kogod Courtyard. For that matter, it might be difficult to get on the train with the tourist rush, even the day before the inauguration. Take a look at woodway's link, for instance.
posted by anotherpanacea at 4:22 AM on November 25, 2008


There is a FAQ about the museum on our Web site. This question answers your issue with luggage. Basically, only small items can be put into lockers. I would imagine that security during that week will be very tight. So I would make other arrangements for your luggage.

For the rest of you, this museum FAQ might answer some of your other questions.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 8:57 AM on November 25, 2008


Bugger.
posted by HotToddy at 10:49 PM on November 25, 2008


Ditto. Though I do think the train would still be viable.
posted by zennie at 2:22 PM on November 26, 2008


DC just made things even more exciting for inauguration weekend: any District establishment with a liquor license, including restaurants and nightclubs, will be allowed to serve alcohol until 5 a.m. -- three hours later than usual -- and serve food round-the-clock from Jan. 17 until the morning after Obama's swearing-in on Jan. 20.
posted by inigo2 at 8:21 AM on December 3, 2008


The problem, inigo2, is that I heard Metro isn't going to be extending their hours much past their normal times. Which is going to suck for those out in the burbs (myself included because I'll be damned if I drive in DC on during that).
posted by sperose at 10:50 PM on December 4, 2008


sperose, see if RideOn, Howard Transit/MARC, or MetroBus have routes that will work for you. Whatever you find be as crazy-crowded as anything else, but people sometimes forget about the bus so I thought I'd throw it out there. I'll be taking the bus from Bethesda to Foggy Bottom and then walking from there --- that is, if there's room on the bus at all!
posted by headnsouth at 6:06 AM on December 5, 2008


Well, metro is still trying to figure out what they're doing. My (completely uneducated) guess is they'll end up being open till at least 4am on Friday through Monday, even if it does cost them a bunch of money. So that'll help a little. I think Metro will try to parlay that weekend into congress actually giving a shit about them (even that one asshole who refuses to give federal money to metro because his constituents in bumblefuck won't get to use it) and maybe helping with some federal funding. Of course, it would also help if metro wasn't seen as incompetent.
posted by inigo2 at 6:34 AM on December 5, 2008


Clearly the answer is to continue partying until transit service resumes, around the time of sun rise. This is know as witnessing "God's Flashlight."
posted by exogenous at 1:25 PM on December 6, 2008


God's Flashlight is about 7:30 AM local time in January. On Inauguration Day, Metro's planning to run 4 AM to 7 PM on a rush hour schedule and stay open until 2 AM, which is 2 hours later than usual. Keep your eye on this page for any changes to that, although from what I am hearing everything seems decided at this point. Metro will start running again Wednesday morning at 5 AM as is usual for weekdays. Running extra trains most of the day and opening early is costing them a mind-boggling amount on top of extra staff and security measures, and most of us go back to work the next morning anyway, so I expect they won't extend their hours past 2 AM.
posted by Tehanu at 1:41 PM on December 6, 2008


God's flashlight
posted by NortonDC at 10:09 AM on December 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Did I hear someone mention a mind-boggling amount of money? How about personally spending up to and exceeding $11,000 (on credit cards, of course)? Makes my excuse look kinda pathetic: "Gotta teach in Texas; can't go to the inauguration." Might listen to the Fox AM radio station, though: did that for the debates. Priceless.
posted by woodway at 12:26 PM on December 7, 2008


RideOn might work for me, but that means I'd still have to walk a mile to get back to my parents' house. (Closest bus stop, whoopee!)
I still have to figure out what the schedule is going to be at work to see if maybe I can come in later. My homie and I are still trying to see about going to a ball possibly.
posted by sperose at 1:36 PM on December 8, 2008


I live a mile and a half away, and I'm planning on walking. I doubt it will be possible to park any closer, anyway.
posted by MrMoonPie at 8:51 PM on December 8, 2008


just posted to Projects: a free search service for inauguration accommodation.
posted by jacalata at 5:03 AM on December 9, 2008


My first meetup! We're coming, we're on the "maybe" list because I still have no clue where we're staying...

Anyone want to trade floor space/couch/etc for a housing swap later in the year? I just discovered my two uncles (who got married in October after nearly 20 years together) are getting tickets, TOO, so we're looking for space for four.

We can offer a week in downtown Berkeley in an apartment all by yourself with high-speed internet and a Prius, or a week in a guest bedroom in Pasadena (where the Rose Bowl football game and Parade are, should you be interested in such things) in trade + additional remuneration if anyone can put us up...

posted by arnicae at 10:22 AM on December 9, 2008


Ok, my wife and I have to bow out due to uncooperative work schedules. I wish you all the best, it's going to be awesome!
posted by odinsdream at 6:34 PM on December 9, 2008


Washington Post is running a front-page article on Monday 15 Dec 08 with advice for local travel plans on the day of the inauguration. It suggests that people within a three-mile radius of the Mall should consider walking...
And anyone planning to drive in from Virginia might consider a boat: the Roosevelt, Memorial and inbound 14th Street bridges will be restricted to buses and authorized vehicles. Maryland and D.C. officials are also considering bus-only corridors... But getting into town might be easier than getting out: If 1 million people try to board the subway at the same time after the main festivities end, it could take more than eight hours to move everyone.
The article goes on to say that airlines are adding flights, and car rental agencies are bringing in extra vehicles. Zowie. It's going to be amazing to see the turnout for this historic event.
posted by woodway at 8:56 PM on December 14, 2008


Wow. At that rate even the 2-hour walk from my house to the mall is a reasonable alternative.

Speaking of... if any Mefites still needs a place to stay, I may be able to accommodate a few.
posted by zennie at 11:12 PM on December 14, 2008


fuck yea! I just got a email from my senator saying I got picked for Obama inauguration. Thanks Mr Cardin.
So I know what I will being Tues after the meetup.

The email said he got over 60000 requests
posted by ShawnString at 9:51 AM on December 18, 2008


We should update the sidebar to reflect the (confirmed?) Jan 19 date. Um...how do we do that?
posted by JoanArkham at 1:55 PM on December 18, 2008


Congratulations, ShawnString, that's amazing! As for the rest of us commoners, here's an update from WP:
As for news, the biggest was probably that planners will set up 5,000 portable toilets at the Mall and along the parade route down Pennsylvania Ave, as well as 10 video walls for people to watch the swearing in and 100 loudspeakers. Also, people who do not have inaugural tickets will not have to go through security to get to the Mall, though police said they will conduct random spot checks... [S]ince National Park Service regulations stipulate 1 toilet for every 300 people, it appears that planners expect 1.5 million.
posted by woodway at 1:58 PM on December 18, 2008


read "since." sigh.
posted by woodway at 1:59 PM on December 18, 2008


Although it is possible that 5 million people will descend on the area in the days leading up to the inauguration, it appears unlikely that trains and local roads could get them all to the Mall and parade route Jan. 20, officials said.


So five million people will be here trying to attend, but only two million can possibly succeed.
posted by NortonDC at 9:02 PM on December 21, 2008

"I'm at 1.7 million already," Tangherlini said, counting the Metro and charter bus passengers. "And I haven't included walkers, drivers, railroaders, Greyhounders, people who already live here."

Not to mention airline passengers. Well more than 400,000 people could fly into the Washington region's three main airports in the days before the inauguration, according to airline figures.
posted by NortonDC at 9:05 PM on December 21, 2008


Sheesh. That's gonna be crazier than two Fourth-of-Julys.

Y'all just come on over to my house. We can watch on the big-screen. You won't get a better view without security clearance.
posted by zennie at 11:27 PM on December 21, 2008


Maybe. But some are suggesting officials are putting out these large numbers to dissuade people from coming. I'm not saying it won't be crowded. But an article in the WashPost this week suggested the numbers projected are about half of that.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 8:54 AM on December 23, 2008


Taken Outtacontext, that is the article that suggested the numbers would be halved. The halving mechanism is the inability of DC transport to get more than 2 million people to the Mall, even if 5 million are in the area.
posted by NortonDC at 12:23 PM on December 23, 2008


Hey, can you add me to the definitely interested list, pretty please?
posted by necessitas at 5:34 PM on January 1, 2009


Ok, kinda confused (what else is new)
Just what day for the meetup are we looking at?
posted by ShawnString at 6:15 AM on January 2, 2009


Plaidrabbit and I might be there. We're still firming up our plans.
posted by joannemerriam at 2:33 PM on January 4, 2009



Hey all..

I was following the conversation in the RSS feed -- saw a list go by of attendees and I wasn't on it. I am most certainly attending the meet-up and I'm bringing a friend.
(See my post indicating such on Nov 9)

Two crazy kids from California, in the house!
posted by trixare4kids at 1:22 PM on January 5, 2009


OK, I'm committing.

Just to restate--2-5 on Monday the 19th, at the courtyard of the Smithsonian American Art Museum/National Portrait Gallery.

Right?
posted by MrMoonPie at 9:23 AM on January 7, 2009


I'm flying in from Missouri. Is it too late for me to join in?
posted by clockworkjoe at 11:34 AM on January 7, 2009


We don't have reservations or anything, so anyone who wants to can drop in. I probably won't get there right at 2, maybe closer to 3, but I'm pretty easy to find in a crowd--6'5", pony tail. And I know several of the folks on the posted list of attendees, so I should be with a crowd, once I get there.
posted by MrMoonPie at 12:18 PM on January 7, 2009


2-5 on Monday the 19th, at the courtyard of the Smithsonian American Art Museum/National Portrait Gallery

That's what I'm thinking. Can someone find a grown up to say for sure?
posted by JoanArkham at 1:35 PM on January 7, 2009


2-5 on Monday the 19th, at the courtyard of the Smithsonian American Art Museum/National Portrait Gallery
That's what I'm thinking. Can someone find a grown up to say for sure?



OK I will do this. As of now it is set in stone. 2-5 on Monday the 19th, at the courtyard of the Smithsonian American Art Museum/National Portrait Gallery (The Kogod Courtyard)

I will also mefi mail (what ever you kids are calling it) Cortex (?I guess) to change it on the sidebar for the correct date.
posted by ShawnString at 7:26 AM on January 8, 2009


ShawnString meffymelded me and I chanced the sidebeers.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:34 AM on January 8, 2009


Since I am acting as an "unofficial" host of this thing (since I work at American Art) all still looks fine for the meetup. There will be a setup taking place for an event happening in the evening so the Courtyard will be closing at 5 pm. And, from what I understand the menu at the restaurant will be more like box lunches. That is because the museum is within the "no vehicle" perimeter being established in downtown DC for the Inauguration and no supply trucks will be allowed in. I'm checking on that and may have further details later today.

I would also suggest you start to follow the news about the Inauguration on the Washington Post Web site (washingtonpost.com). In today's paper they have announced that most key bridges over the Potomac will be closed. If you are staying in Virginia the Metro will probably be your best bet.

For event updates here is a link to the Post's Inauguration Central.

I would like to get a general count on the number of people coming so I can alert our food services.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 7:50 AM on January 8, 2009


Thx Cortex!

I'm in, plus one.
posted by JoanArkham at 8:30 AM on January 8, 2009


Just one addition from my previous post: our restaurant will close at 4:30 pm on January 19.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 1:27 PM on January 8, 2009


I'll be there! I'm moving to Arlington just in time for the festivities.

I've never been to one of these shindigs before. I'll probably get there right at 2 or shortly thereafter...is there someone who's planning to be there then that I can look for, so I'm not wandering around harassing random strangers, trying to find you guys?

not that I don't enjoy harassing random strangers
posted by little e at 8:20 PM on January 8, 2009


Nah, little e, that's pretty much the standard practice at these things--you walk up to a group of geeky-looking guys (it's usually mostly guys, and, yes, we're kind of geeky-looking) and say "Are you from the internet?" They'll be looking for you, too. Again, I'm easy to find, but I'll be getting there late--if you get there before me and can't hook-up, go wander around the artwork for a while and come back.
posted by MrMoonPie at 7:01 AM on January 9, 2009


If it helps I will wear a bright red sweater vest. I'm virtually bald (well in reality I'm bald too). And I wear rimless glasses.

BTW, our museum has just issued an information page on special programs and temporary closings during the Inaugural Weekend. With events like these things can change so use this as a guide. The museum is definitely planning on being open.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 8:08 AM on January 9, 2009


Cool then, thanks.
posted by little e at 10:48 AM on January 9, 2009


I'd like to officially recommend that once we are good and goofy we all move to an after-party at RocketBar which is right around the corner. They have shuffleboard and stuff and cheap(ish) beer and aren't usually packed in the early evening.

Anyway, if anyone wants my cell number MeMail me and Ill give it to you and you can prankcall me/try to figure out where people are at if it's after 5.

(Also this will be my one official plug for the site I write for if visitors are looking for various odd DC dance-party/indie rock options that week.)
posted by Potomac Avenue at 11:05 AM on January 9, 2009


I should be there, too.

(I've never been to a MeFi meetup before ... do we just show up, or is there more to it than that?)
posted by oostevo at 7:47 PM on January 9, 2009


You have to know the code word.
posted by zennie at 12:38 AM on January 10, 2009


I will likely be there for this one, assuming I can make it into DC. I actually took the whole week off.

Btw, for people visiting, there are a shitload of concerts going on that week, pretty much every night. I think most are sold out, though. I'm still crossing my fingers on Moby tickets Sunday night, though.
posted by empath at 11:07 AM on January 11, 2009


Definitely need a general headcount today of those attending. Thx.

Here are Metro directions to the American Art Museum for the meetup: Take the Red Line to Gallery Place/Chinatown. Exit at the 9th Street exit. As you take the escalator up you will see the museum building to your left. At the top of the escalator make a 180 turn and you will be at G Street. Enter the museum at its G Street entrance, go straight forward to the Kogod Courtyard.

I'm not sure what you do at meetups either, other than say hi and commiserate with your fellow MeFi people. ;-)
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 5:59 AM on January 12, 2009


adding this to a likely for me to attend.
posted by vanderwal at 7:28 AM on January 12, 2009


me plus 1
posted by ShawnString at 8:56 AM on January 12, 2009


Do you need re-confirmation of those who already confirmed, albeit a while ago? Might be a good idea. At any rate, I will be there, perhaps with my lovely spouse.
posted by MrMoonPie at 9:07 AM on January 12, 2009


Of course, while you're at our museum for the Meetup I hope you take some time to look around. The building is full of history. It's the third oldest federal building in the city, after the Capitol and the White House.

If you go to the third floor, east wing, you will be in our Lincoln Gallery. This gallery houses a lot of our contemporary art including some of our iconic pieces from video artist Nam June Paik and word artist Jenny Holzer. If you look closely in the window frame by the Duane Hanson sculpture you will see a bit of Civil War graffiti that was discovered during our recent renovation (the page I linked to for the Hanson shows that it's not on view, but it is).

But you might also like to know that Lincoln held his second Inaugural Ball in our building. We did a blog post about it last June. A "highlight" of that second Inaugural was a massive food fight. I hope our Meetup is a bit more civil! -grin
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 9:28 AM on January 12, 2009 [1 favorite]


I just need a general headcount so I can alert the food service staff. The number of people coming will suffice. If it's a bit more or less when everyone shows up that's okay. It's always a good idea to let restaurant know when a group is coming.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 9:30 AM on January 12, 2009


PlaidRabbit and I will not be there after all.
posted by joannemerriam at 11:45 AM on January 13, 2009


Yay, museum meetup! Wife and I will try to be there.
posted by brownpau at 7:19 AM on January 15, 2009


I still need a general headcount for the Meetup. Thx.

The Smithsonian has just launched its Inauguration Web site: www.gosmithsonian.com/inauguration
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 7:53 AM on January 15, 2009


I will have to bow out, unfortunately. (I drew the short stick for having to work on Monday.)
posted by sperose at 8:05 AM on January 15, 2009


headnsouth + 2 teens bowing out; we'll be on the Mall Sunday night for the concert and Tuesday for the swearing-in, but family & friends in the MD suburbs trump MeFi meetups on Monday, unfortunately. Have a great time, everyone! And thanks to TakenOuttacontext for making it happen.
posted by headnsouth at 9:26 AM on January 15, 2009


You mean, you'll be on the Mall Sunday afternoon. The concert is at 2:00.
posted by arco at 9:54 AM on January 15, 2009


anotherpanacea + wife!
posted by anotherpanacea at 1:45 PM on January 15, 2009


Ooh! Ooh! I'll try to make it.
posted by Kattullus at 4:30 AM on January 16, 2009


arco: You mean, you'll be on the Mall Sunday afternoon. The concert is at 2:00.


Egads, yes, that's exactly what I mean, now that you've pointed it out. Thank you, arco!
posted by headnsouth at 5:47 AM on January 16, 2009


Does somebody want to compile the list of expected attendees in one place for takenouttacontext?

Maybe throw it up on the wiki or something?
posted by empath at 8:22 AM on January 16, 2009


I'm there (90% probability).

I vote for compiling the list here.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 9:54 AM on January 16, 2009


I fully expect to make the Kogod Courtyard meetup on Monday, plus spouse maybe.
posted by exogenous at 10:07 AM on January 16, 2009


Just give me a number here. And I need it within the next two hours. Thanks.

BTW, in preparation for your time in our museum, you might like to check out an NPR story that was broadcast today about Lincoln's second Inaugural Ball which took place in our building. Link.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 10:45 AM on January 16, 2009


Count Mais Oui:
Mr. Moonpie
JoanArkham + 1
Taken Outtacontext
anotherpanacea + wife!
brownpau + wife
ShawnString + 1
vanderwal
empath
oostevo

Peut-etre:
omiewise (try: private message)
exogenous plus spouse maybe.
and hosted from Uranus (90% probability)
Kattullus (try)

This is just from the time that Taken Outtacontext asked for a new headcout: I'm sure many have dumped the thread from their feeds.

So 13 yes, 5 maybe/tries. Back in November there were 30+ definite attendees.

I'm inclined to say 20-25 in the spirit of inaugural optimism, but notice that we've only really got 13 definites. It's your call, Taken Outtacontext. Maybe 20?
posted by anotherpanacea at 11:38 AM on January 16, 2009


Mrs. exogenous is out, so minus one from the "maybe" group.
posted by exogenous at 11:39 AM on January 16, 2009


13 yes, 4 maybe.

You know what? I don't think we can do this in time, Taken Outtacontext. How bad is it if we don't know until Monday morning?
posted by anotherpanacea at 11:46 AM on January 16, 2009


MeTa
posted by anotherpanacea at 11:52 AM on January 16, 2009


I just told them 30. So don't worry. It was only a general heads-up. Don't worry about it. Not a problem. Thx. (I've also post this in the other thread (thx anotherpanacea).
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 12:03 PM on January 16, 2009


Missed the last headcount--I and MrsBucket will be there, so add two more.
posted by EarBucket at 12:17 PM on January 16, 2009


I'll be standing somewhere in the middle of the courtyard, wearing my red sweater vest (chosen for maximum visibility) around 2. Come up and introduce yourself. And don't forget to say the secret password. ;-)
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 1:14 PM on January 16, 2009


I should be there.
posted by clockworkjoe at 9:38 PM on January 16, 2009


The secret password is "EXCUSE ME SIR WHERE IS THE COLBERT PORTRAIT I CAN'T FIND IT"
posted by brownpau at 9:59 AM on January 19, 2009


I'm here where is every body?
posted by empath at 11:39 AM on January 19, 2009


NortonDC and I aren't there yet, but we're leaving soon!
posted by onlyconnect at 11:52 AM on January 19, 2009


Gandalf sighting!
posted by empath at 1:04 PM on January 19, 2009


Yeah! Gandalf! And that guy who chewed gum on Seinfeld, and the guy who used to be on CSI! Cool!

Great meetup, all. Sorry I forgot my camera battery.
posted by MrMoonPie at 4:49 PM on January 19, 2009


This meetup had everything...
Gandalf, Warrick from CSI Vegas, North Korean Godzilla and SkeeBall.

I just wish I would have taken pics...I even had my camera (with batteries)
posted by ShawnString at 5:17 PM on January 19, 2009


And Lars! Someone got his picture taken with Lars!
posted by MrMoonPie at 5:25 PM on January 19, 2009


I want a prize! Someone get me a prize! I demand prizes!
posted by ColdChef at 5:48 PM on January 19, 2009


The post meetup trip to Rocket Bar and Potbelly was awesome. I had a great time.
posted by clockworkjoe at 6:22 PM on January 19, 2009


ok MrMoonPie...did we miss something by leaving early? Lars? Lars who??
posted by ShawnString at 6:59 PM on January 19, 2009


There were so many of you I barely scratched the surface conversationally (except with Katullus) before we had to skip out of Rocket Bar. We must do this again sometime, perhaps at the Huckabee-Palin inauguration in 2013?
posted by brownpau at 6:59 PM on January 19, 2009 [1 favorite]


Some of us are going to try to meet up again tomorrow as well, though who knows how that will work out.
posted by empath at 7:10 PM on January 19, 2009


Is there more than one Lars?
posted by MrMoonPie at 7:12 PM on January 19, 2009


Awww! I missed it!! :(

Hopefully I'll make the next (non) Inaugural one. :( Blah
posted by tittergrrl at 7:23 PM on January 19, 2009


Lars with kate (dog food sugar) and sarah outside the Rocket Bar.

Wonderful fun meeting all of you!
posted by dog food sugar at 9:03 PM on January 19, 2009


Pictures, please.
posted by ColdChef at 4:50 AM on January 20, 2009


Since I can't be there - are any of you going to be Twittering? I'm thinking it might be fun to follow some of you for the vicarious experience.

I did hear that cell service on the mall is expected to be disrupted due to volume (from all the texting, mainly).
posted by Miko at 5:37 AM on January 20, 2009


I tried to find other people at the Mall for the inauguration but couldn't find them. Is anyone doing anything tonight or tomorrow?
posted by clockworkjoe at 12:52 PM on January 20, 2009


Can those of you who were there and are on Flickr add a note to yourselves in this panorama? (I was gonna go around and get the other side but then MrMoonPie told me Gandalf was around, and shortly after we had to vacate.)
posted by brownpau at 3:02 PM on January 20, 2009


I have a free ticket to the michael franti show at the 930 club

Email me if you want it

Empath@gmail.com
posted by empath at 8:35 PM on January 20, 2009


Okay, I didn't realize how late it was when i posted that (was already in the show).

Anyway, it's too late.

But Dresden Dolls was fucking awesome. They played a War Pigs cover.
posted by empath at 10:12 PM on January 20, 2009


Argh, who was the guy from Iceland? I remember his name but I don't know how to spell it and I wanted to show him this link I mentioned at the meetup: A collection of the worst (best?) political cartoons including some of Chuck Asay's greatest hits.
posted by clockworkjoe at 9:03 PM on January 21, 2009


I'm the guy from Iceland. And my name is spelled Kári.

And thanks for the link, clockworkjoe, it is quite, quite enjoyable. Though I find Chuck Asay really to be on another level from everybody else.
posted by Kattullus at 9:27 PM on January 21, 2009


that would be Kattullus
posted by ShawnString at 9:29 PM on January 21, 2009


jinx
posted by ShawnString at 9:29 PM on January 21, 2009


Like this recent Asay cartoon reminds me of old-style satirical cartoons with all the cramming in of various satirical objects... like William Hogarth or something.

It also helps that Chuck Asay is a complete and total loon.
posted by Kattullus at 9:40 PM on January 21, 2009


Here's the North Korean giant monster movie I talked about, Pulgasari. It's completely insane.
posted by clockworkjoe at 3:51 PM on January 22, 2009


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