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dr.com Capitol Tour, Saturday, February 9th at 11 AM and 2 PM - Given By A Guide Who Has Done This For 15 Years


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I love this community.

One of our members has offered to give an exclusive tour of the Capitol for donrockwell.com members, Saturday, February 9th, at 11 AM. The tour will be geeky, comprehensive, and will take approximately 2 hours.

Here is the initial post (please read carefully about the restrictions):

I would be happy to host a Capitol tour under the following restrictions:

(1) Saturday, February 9 at 11 a.m. No liquids, gels, food, sharp objects (including Swiss Army knives), and large bags. Cameras and cell phones are OK;

(2) Up to 15 people; and

(3) Please don't reveal my identity (I've given tours for years because I work there but I cannot receive compensation of any kind).

And the follow-up:

I would love to give a Capitol tour for anyone who is interested on Saturday, February 9 at 11 a.m., unless something happens that prevents me from giving the tour. Please refer to the following website for what you can and cannot bring: http://www.aoc.gov/prohibited-items-us-capitol-building. I can take the first 15 people who are interested (I can't take more than 15).

Please expect a tour in the 2-hour range. The House and Senate galleries will be unavailable unless the House or Senate are in session. It's completely free.

I could tweet this, and it would sell out tonight. But I'm not going to because I want it to be limited to our loyal members. Just chime in here, and your spot will be reserved. Yes, well-behaved children are welcome, but keep in mind it's a two-hour tour. (Gilligan's Island was only a Threeeeeeeeee-hourrrrrr tour!)

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I'd love to go! Can I be a tentative +1, as I think my girlfriend would love to come too. (I'll check with her tomorrow morning.)

Of course, Matt. This is exactly why I didn't tweet it, so valuable members like you can have plenty of time to reply. You're absolutely in until you tell me otherwise.

I am *so happy* to give our members this perk, and a huge perk it is, too.

Count me + MattRocks in also.

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Still room? Also w/ a +1?

Of course. Until you see 15 signed up here, there's still room. That's why I didn't tweet it.

As with all donrockwell.com events, new members are *welcome*, but they're going to have to be new members who sign in within the next day or so. I've invited Matt's mom, her husband and their two daughters, so I might be up to +5. :)

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Oooh, we'll actually be downtown for dinner at Equinox at 5:30pm and this would be a great start to the day! I haven't visited the Capitol since I went on a field trip with school when I was quite young. But we are a party of 4 and I'm sure the limit must be already more than 11? I can't get a hold of the others in my party quite yet, so thought I'd check here first to see if it would even be an option.

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Oooh, we'll actually be downtown for dinner at Equinox at 5:30pm and this would be a great start to the day! I haven't visited the Capitol since I went on a field trip with school when I was quite young. But we are a party of 4 and I'm sure the limit must be already more than 11? I can't get a hold of the others in my party quite yet, so thought I'd check here first to see if it would even be an option.

Yes, my guests (other than Matt are probably out), so at most it would be Matt and me, and I don't mind giving up our slots if there's enough interest. Right now, I count:

TheMatt + 1?

darkstar965 + 1

Gary Tanigawa

hm212 + 1

weezy + 1?

Tweaked + 1

squidsdc + 1 + johnnye (squidsdc's SIL) + 1

So that's exactly 15 if TheMatt and weezy are bringing guests. Squids, any chance of getting your guests (assuming they're adults) to become members? [Edit - squidsdc's SIL is already one: johnnye] I really want this to be a "thank you" for our members more than anything. Actually, I'd really appreciate it if ALL +1s would sign up unless they're children (and even children are more than welcome as members, but some of the content here is adult humor, obviously, often edging into uneasy topics such as kangaroo sex). Unless your children are *really* interested in nerdy history and have a high level of patience, I'd advise against this tour - even Matt might get impatient after two hours which is why I have no problem giving up our spots.

I'm pretty sure we could fill about 10 of these tours.

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If someone backs out, I would like to come with a +1 who I will certainly entice to join the board. Or I will come alone if only one spot opens. Don, I absolutely do not want you to skip it for me - part of the appeal is finally getting to put a face to the name. :)

And then the next topic - where are we eating afterward? But I'll save my participation for that for when/if I'm a part of the "we". ;)

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If someone backs out, I would like to come with a +1 who I will certainly entice to join the board. Or I will come alone if only one spot opens. Don, I absolutely do not want you to skip it for me - part of the appeal is finally getting to put a face to the name. :)

And then the next topic - where are we eating afterward? But I'll save my participation for that for when/if I'm a part of the "we". ;)

Okay, you're #1 and #2 on the wait list.

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If someone backs out, I would like to come with a +1 who I will certainly entice to join the board. Or I will come alone if only one spot opens. Don, I absolutely do not want you to skip it for me - part of the appeal is finally getting to put a face to the name. :)

And then the next topic - where are we eating afterward? But I'll save my participation for that for when/if I'm a part of the "we". ;)

Okay, conundrum time: I got this PM sent to me at 12:57, and didn't see it:

Hey Don - Can I (+1) be the back up for the tentative +1s of TheMatt and Weezy?

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Okay, conundrum time: I got this PM sent to me at 12:57, and didn't see it:

Hey Don - Can I (+1) be the back up for the tentative +1s of TheMatt and Weezy?

Gut feel but I bet this all works out for your texter and ChoirGirl when the smoke clears. Thanks again, Don and the member who offered this. Very cool and much appreciated.

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Having thought about it, I'd like to strike my +1 request if there continues to be additional DR members requesting a spot on the waitlist as I would prefer to see current DR members join the group rather than a friend of mine who has not participated on the site before (and it's a chance for me to meet more of you).

Okay, conundrum time: I got this PM sent to me at 12:57, and didn't see it:

Hey Don - Can I (+1) be the back up for the tentative +1s of TheMatt and Weezy?

If you got the PM before I posted then give the spot that just became available to the person who PM'ed.

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Yes, my guests (other than Matt are probably out), so at most it would be Matt and me, and I don't mind giving up our slots if there's enough interest. Right now, I count:

TheMatt + 1?

darkstar965 + 1

Gary Tanigawa

hm212 + 1

weezy + 1?

Tweaked + 1

squidsdc + 1+ johnnye (squidsdc's SIL) + 1

So that's exactly 15 if TheMatt and weezy are bringing guests. Squids, any chance of getting your guests (assuming they're adults) to become members? I really want this to be a "thank you" for our members more than anything. Actually, I'd really appreciate it if ALL +1s would sign up unless they're children (and even children are more than welcome as members, but some of the content here is adult humor, obviously, often edging into uneasy topics such as kangaroo sex). Unless your children are *really* interested in nerdy history and have a high level of patience, I'd advise against this tour - even Matt might get impatient after two hours which is why I have no problem giving up our spots.

I'm pretty sure we could fill about 10 of these tours.

I think I can sway one, maybe two of the three--and no, that wouldn't be Mr. S. :lol: Most likely his sister, though.

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Glory. There may be hope for a second tour at some point (no definite confirmation, but definitely an interest on the part of the tour guide), so if anyone confirmed for 2/9 is flexible with their schedule and can come another day, my 12:57 text messager would really like to come on that particular date and time (although it would be just for 1, with no +1). So if anyone wants to reschedule, there should still be another chance.

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Glory. There may be hope for a second tour at some point (no definite confirmation, but definitely an interest on the part of the tour guide), so if anyone confirmed for 2/9 is flexible with their schedule and can come another day, my 12:57 text messager would really like to come on that particular date and time (although it would be just for 1, with no +1). So if anyone wants to reschedule, there should still be another chance.

Wasn't a space for this person already created by someone canceling their +1?

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Good news!

There's enough interest on the part of our members ...

There's enough generosity on the part of our tour guide (who will be giving up AN ENTIRE DAY of her time to benefit people whom she has never before met (How amazing is this?)) ...

that a second tour is going to be held at 2 PM the very same day. 15 people at 11 AM, 15 people at 2 PM.

Could someone please step forward and organize the people and time slot? I'm a little overwhelmed right now, and this is fairly time-sensitive. With the exception of squidsdc, let's limit it to members +1 guest only. (One of squidsdc's guests is actually a member, so there are technically two members +1 each in her group). If you're a couple with a well-behaved child, you can easily get around this requirement by having both spouses join if they haven't already.

Attendees, feel free to chime in if you have a time slot preference. Matt and I will stay out so everyone can have a chance to participate who wants to.

I'm not sure how many are on the waiting list, or have signed up, but everyone who has chimed in up until now gets first priority. And again, as much as I want to, I'm not going to tweet this because I want loyal members to have first dibs, so whoever signs in on their own volition (as opposed to being lured by a tweet) will get the first chance. If you want to come, express it ASAP, like, tonight, like, now.

As of 7:05 PM, here are the attendees:

TheMatt + 1

darkstar965 + 1

Gary Tanigawa

hm212 + 1

weezy

Tweaked + 1

squidsdc + 1

Johnnye + 1 (squidsdc's SIL)

That's 14 (with room for 1 more) who originally signed up for the 11 AM tour). And here was the waiting list. There's a slight possibility that I've missed a +1, or potential attendee, so if I've made a mistake here, obviously they get preference over new sign-ups. So, here was the waiting list:

goldenticket +1

Choirgirl21 + 1

zoramargolis

Xochitl10

KMango + 1

u-bet!

Night Owl

Lydia R + 1

iolaire + 1

That's 14 as well. So as of right now, we have 28 people total (UNLESS I'VE MISCOUNTED, SO BEFORE YOU SIGN UP, GO BACK AND PROOFREAD THIS LIST TO MAKE SURE I HAVEN'T SO YOU'RE NOT DISAPPOINTED). And LauraB + 1 makes a total of 30, so guaranteed slots are now closed. LauraB has also offered to organize the inevitable time-slot shuffling, so the 30 attendees should feel free to post here (preferable) or PM Laura if you want to change time slots. I'm sure that it will be easy to swap 11-for-2, or 2-for-11. Laura, you may want to send a mass PM out to all attendees which can facilitate time-slot swaps (and, more importantly, so the wait-listers know they got in).

I'm glad everyone got a chance to go! And I suspect there will be even more interest for future tours. Despite the fact that our benevolent tour guide cannot accept compensation, I think a drink, or dinner, is in order at some future point, and I don't care what she says.

Okay, so - people can shuffle around, and switch time slots with each other as they please (do it behind the scenes via PM, if possible), but as of right now, we can accommodate everyone who has requested. :)

Now, who's going to volunteer to herd this destruction of feral cats (*) from this point forward?

Here are the rules (cut-and-pasted from a PM with our benevolent tour guide):

---

First off, I'm humbled that anyone would want to come listen to me talk without having met me, although I do know what I'm doing! I just hope to live up to expectations.

Because I'm a nice person, I'll do another tour on the 9th starting at 2:00; the Capitol closes for tours at 4:30 so I can't go any longer than that. The wait listers get first priority, but once again 15 is it. If Lydia R cannot make it, the next tour will take baseball season into consideration. :)

Anyone showing up that day should enter through the Capitol Visitor Center entrance, which is on 1st Street NE/SE across from the Supreme Court and Library of Congress. If you're coming by Metro you can use Capitol South or Union Station. The CVC is underground, so there are stairs, ramps, and elevators to help you get to the entrance. Once you enter and go through security* you will proceed through a set of doors into a no-mans-land space. Don't stay there. Instead, go through the next set of doors. I will be standing to the right, across from the coat check and probably leaning against the Senate Appointments Desk. As one identifier, I wear glasses. If no one with glasses is loitering there please hang around anyway because it means I'm not quite there yet!

Please try to arrive before the start time. I can't predict how long the security line will be so aim for 10:45 if you're on the early tour and 1:45 if you're on the late tour. NOTE: In addition to purses and electronics, jackets and belts must go through the X-ray machine. The Capitol Police will mention this but it helps to be prepared in advance. You can leave your shoes on unless you know that they set off metal detectors (ie. heels with metal spikes, that type of thing).

*Here's the list of no-nos. Please note that cell phones, cameras, and video cameras are allowed:

  • Liquid, including water
  • Food or beverages of any kind, including fruit and unopened packaged food
  • Aerosol containers
  • Non-aerosol spray (Prescriptions for medical needs are permitted.)
  • Any pointed object, e.g. knitting needles and letter openers (Pens and pencils are permitted.)
  • Any bag larger than 18" wide x 14" high x 8.5" deep
  • Electric stun guns, martial arts weapons or devices
  • Guns, replica guns, ammunition, and fireworks
  • Knives of any size
  • Mace and pepper spray
  • Razors and box cutters
---

(*) No, really, a group of wild cats is called a "destruction." Look it up.

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If there's still room, I'd like to join the tour +1. Afternoon or morning is good.

Also, I'd be happy to organize the attendance, if that's still needed.

You've got it, and registrations are now CLOSED until someone cancels.

And I accept your offer to organize the 30 people into 11 AM and 2 PM tour groups. LauraB is now the official Capitol Tour Chairman! Laura, if you want to start a wait list, you should, but I suspect no more than several people will cancel. I highly recommend getting cell phone numbers from people on the wait list in case there are last-minute cancelations (this can be done behind the scenes, via PM).

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Thanks, Don. I'm on it!

Honest to goodness, if I died tomorrow, I will have died a happy man, thanks to the General Awesomeness of this community.

I haven't made a penny from it, and it's times like this when I absolutely couldn't care less.

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Ok, folks. I've gone through the entire thread and here's what I've got: 30 sign-ups (that's assuming that DonRocks and Matt are not coming). Here they are: I've placed the total number of attendees in each party in parentheses:

The Matt (2)

Darkstar65 (2)

Gary Tanigawa (1)

hm212 (2)

weezy (1)

Tweaked (2)

Squidsdc (4)

Choirgirl (2)

goldenticket (2)

Zoramargolis (1)

Xochitl10 (1)

KMango (2)

ubet! (1)

NightOwl (1)

LydiaR (2)

iolaire (2)

LauraB (2)

Now, the first 15, that's from The Matt through 1/2 of Choirgirl, are signed up for the 11:00 time. The rest would be for the 2:00 time. If anyone who is signed up for the 11:00 time would prefer the 2:00 time, or anyone now on the 2:00 list who can't make that time, LET ME KNOW, ASAP!

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my plus one and me are in for the 11am but would prefer to switch to the 2pm if you have someone looking to switch times.

Thanks.

Would one person from the 2:00 group like to join the 11:00 group instead? This will allow hm212 +1 to move to the afternoon group and evenly balance the 2 groups at 15 each. Currently the morning group has 16, which is one more than the maximum 15 requested by our tour guide. Thank you.

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Would one person from the 2:00 group like to join the 11:00 group instead? This will allow hm212 +1 to move to the afternoon group and evenly balance the 2 groups at 15 each. Currently the morning group has 16, which is one more than the maximum 15 requested by our tour guide. Thank you.

I'm happy to switch from 2:00 to 11:00.

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I am very sadly going to have to bow out of this event. Something else has come up that conflicts. I'm really sad to miss it :( but hope this opens up a space for someone else who wants to go (or allows Don & Matt to).

Sorry to hear you can't make it. Thanks so much for letting us know so quickly.

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I'd like to update everyone on the attendance lists as they stand right now:

11:00 There are a total of 13 signed up at this time. There is room for 2 more at 11:00.

The Matt (2)

Darkstar965 (2)

Gary Tanigawa (1)

Weezy (1)

Tweaked (2)

Squidsdc (4)

Xochitl10 (1)

2:00 This tour is currently full at 15.

Zoramargolis (1)

KMango (2)

u-bet! (1)

NightOwl (1)

Lydia R. (2)

iolaire (2)

goldenticket (2)

LauraB (2)

hm212 (2)

Several of you have already confirmed your attendance. I would greatly appreciate it if those who have not yet confirmed, would do so via a PM to me. Thanks very much!

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Here's the latest update on registration for the Capitol Tours next Saturday, February 9th: We've had some shuffling and we now have room for 3 more attendees: 2 at 11:00 and 1 at 2:00. If you are interested, please PM me.

Here are the lists of attendees as they stand now:

11:00

The Matt (2)

darkstar965 (2)

Gary Tanigawa (1)

Tweaked (2)

Squidsdc (4)

Xochitl10 (1)

IlanaKS (1)

2:00

zoramargolis (1)

KMango (2)

u-bet! (1)

Lydia R. (2)

iolaire (2)

goldenticket (2)

LauraB (2)

hm212 (2)

For those of you on the lists, if your plans change, please let me know via PM as soon as possible. Thanks!

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