We're Gonna Party Like…Upstanding Citizens

Late arrivals could make up rowdy factor

For those hoping that the District’s extended bar and restaurant hours would give the Capitol City a boost this weekend -- and possibly some New York City flair, we apologize.

It’s not easy wearing strapless dresses and high heels in freezing cold weather.

And it seems the elements, late arrivals and a lack of participation conspired to dampen opening night of extended alcohol hours in the District -- at least for officials looking for action and restaurant and bar owners hoping for an increase in business, according to The Washington Times’ Gary Emerling.

Normal last call in the District is 2 a.m. on weekdays and 3 a.m. on weekends.  In December, the D.C. Council gave permission for registered bars and restaurants to serve alcohol until 4 a.m. and serve food 24 hours a day during inauguration week, beginning early Saturday morning and running through early Wednesday morning.

More than 280 establishments signed up to participate on various days, with many hoping to capitalize on the 1 million or more people expected to be in town for the celebration of President-elect Barack Obama's inauguration.

And while some feared longer alcohol hours would lead to legions of inebriated revelers, city police and other officials said that Friday night was a quiet night.

Of course, for others, the night was not a letdown, reported The Washington Post’s Clarence Williams and Martin Weil, who interviewed a handful of people at random Sunday morning.

"If ever there was a time to celebrate it's right now," Brandon Gray, a 25-year-old electrical engineer from Fort Washington told The Post. Gray, who was encountered at Fado, in the Chinatown area, is a strong supporter of President-elect Barack Obama.

And at least one out-of-towner told The Post that the extended inaugural hours gave the District an entertainment edge on her hometown of Los Angeles, where closing time is 2 a.m.

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