The Presidential Inaugural Committee figured out a way to watch the parade and get something to eat besides sidewalk pretzels and half-smokes: The members rented out Central Michel Richard for the afternoon, according to General Manager Brian Zipin.

Committee members will be noshing on a luxuriant buffet spread, prepared and served by Central’s superb cooks, as the parade rolls by the restaurant’s front door, located near 11th Street NW and Pennsylvania Avenue. Zipin says the committee should have an okay view of the parade from Central’s front windows, though it may be significantly blocked once the sidewalk starts to fill up. At around 11 this morning, there wasn’t “a lot” of people out there, he says.

By 2:30, the start time of the parade, Zipin figures that will change. “So many poeple may be outside the restaurant, I don’t if we will be able to open the door,” the general manager says.

Assuming they can open the door, will Zipin let his hard-working cooks and waiters take a break and watch the historic parade? “I don’t think the chefs will want to come out,” Zipin says. As for the servers, though, Zipin says he “shouldn’t have a problem with that, as long as it’s civil.”

Zipin says he may even let the cooks out, should they want to leave their buffet stations for the parade. He understands, after all, the importance of the day and its events. “It’s exciting,” Zipin says. “It’s amazing.”