Frequently Asked Questions
Q. What is the official "Inaugural Period?"
A. The inaugural period for the 57th Inauguration will be Jan. 15-24, 2013.
Q. Who is in charge of Department of Defense support for the 57th Presidential Inauguration?
A. Commander United States Northern Command tasked JTF-NCR to plan, coordinate and execute DoD approved support, as well as conduct liaison and coordination with the Presidential Inaugural Committee and Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies.
Q. What assets will JTF-NCR provide to the 57th Presidential Inauguration?
A. Military participation traditionally includes musical units, marching bands, color guards, firing details and salute batteries for the Inaugural Parade. In addition to ceremonial support requirements, JTF-NCR provides support to the Primary Federal Agency. Such assistance normally includes quick reaction forces, Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Enterprise response forces, communications platforms and medical assets to enable rapid response to any threat actions or crisis. JTF-NCR will also assist the PIC and JCCIC in duties deemed appropriate by the JTF-NCR.
Q. How do you ensure that military assets are used appropriately?
A. JTF-NCR Operation Order (OPORD) 02-12: Joint Efforts and Preparedness in support of the 57th Presidential Inauguration” outlines the parameters of the military support that can be used by the PIC and JCCIC. These guidelines state that support is constrained by applicable laws and policy, operational commitments and resource availability. All requests for military support are reviewed to ensure the use of military assets is appropriate and in keeping with established guidelines.
Q. When and where will the swearing-in ceremony be held?
A. The ceremony will take place Jan. 21, 2013, at the West Front of the Capitol.
Q. What is the departure ceremony and where will it be held?
A. The departure ceremony is a tribute to the outgoing commander in chief and is usually held at Andrews Air Force Base following the swearing-in ceremony, while the new president is having lunch with Congress. There will be no departure ceremony during the 57th Inauguration.
Q. How many troops will participate in the Inaugural Parade?
A. In the past, approximately 2,500 active and reserve military personnel have participated in the parade. The Presidential Inaugural Committee will determine the actual composition of the parade.
Q. What route will the parade use?
A. Traditionally, the parade route begins at the corner of 4th Street, NW and Pennsylvania Avenue, goes west on Pennsylvania Avenue, then north on 15th Street, and finally west on Pennsylvania Avenue to 17th Street. Total distance is about 1.65 miles.
Q. When will the parade dress rehearsal be held?
A. The parade dress rehearsal is scheduled for Sunday, Jan. 13, 2013. More information will be provided closer to the event date.
Q. I am in the U.S. Armed Forces and would like to participate in the Inaugural Parade. Who can I contact to find out more information?
A. For information on how to participate in the Inaugural Parade please see our “Contact Us” page.
Q. What is the application process for non-military marching bands interested in participation in the Inaugural Parade?
A. For information on how to participate in the 57th Presidential Inaugural Parade please see our “Parade Application” page.
Q. Is there a media day scheduled for the MAPEX?
A. Yes, there is an inaugural symposium and MAPEX media availability scheduled Dec. 9-13, 2012. More information will be provided closer to the symposium date.
Q. Where can I go to get more information about what to expect on the day of the Inauguration?
A. For more information on transportation, entrance, weather, security restrictions and other questions regarding the inauguration, please visit http://inauguration.dc.gov/index.asp. Continue checking this site for current updates.
Q. How long has the U.S. Armed Forces supported presidential inaugural ceremonies?
A. The U.S. Armed Forces has provided support for official presidential inaugural ceremonies dating back to April 30, 1789, when members of the Continental Army escorted George Washington to the first U.S. presidential swearing-in ceremony at Federal Hall in New York City.
Q. Who was the first president to be inaugurated in Washington, D.C.?
A. Thomas Jefferson was the first president to be inaugurated in Washington, D.C., March 4, 1801.
Q. Which president had the biggest inaugural parade?
A. The longest parade was four and a half hours during Dwight D. Eisenhower's first inauguration in 1953. The parade consisted of 73 bands, 59 floats, horses, elephants, and civilian and military vehicles.
Q. When was the first inaugural ball?
A. On May 7, 1789, one week after the Inauguration of George Washington in New York City, sponsors held a ball to honor the new President. However, it was not until 1809, with the Inauguration of James Madison in Washington, D.C., that the tradition of the Inaugural ball began.
Q. Which president did a woman swear into office?
A. Sarah T. Hughes is the only woman to administer the oath of office. She was a U.S. District Court judge who swore Lyndon B. Johnson into office on Air Force One after John F. Kennedy's assassination in 1963.