City Paper is not for tourists
Tomorrow, the Washington Area Bicyclist Association will be running Inauguration Day bike valet stations from 7 am to 5 pm.
If you’re interested in having the cycling-supporters park and guard your ride while you hang with Obama, one of the two stations will be located north of the National Mall at 16th St. NW between K St. & I St., the other south of the Mall in the Jeffersonian Memorial parking lot. These spots are just outside the inauguration’s hard security zone, so after you drop off your two-wheeled loved-one, it’s an easy stroll to a “general public entry point,” as WABA’s google map, replete with bike-routes you can take to the area, illustrates.
Though they’re bound to have quite a few bikes to park, considering the response the organization got from riders hoping to use the service, don’t worry, they’ll find space for your ride. If the bike racks donated to the group by Dero Racks fill up, WABA will start dragging over surplus crowd control barriers.
Handing over a cycle will be easy.
Just find the line of people with bikes (WABA volunteers will be working very hard to keep that line short) and wait for a turn. Black-vested attendants will take both bike and biking-stuff, like trailers and panniers— and assign a numbered ticket to the gear. Half the ticket will go with you, the other half with your bike, attached to its handlebars by a twist tie.
The last step is to visit the sign-up table and write name and cell-phone digits (supplying a cell-number isn’t required, but encouraged ) in WABA’s binder. If there’s some sort of emergency, like heavy snowfall, the valets will buzz people’s phones to let them know to pick-up early.
Try not to lose the ticket. If it happens anyway, be sure to have I.D. so the valets can link name and bike.