28 August 2010

Restoring Honor Rally

Kent and I attended the Glenn Beck "Restoring Honor" rally in Washington, DC on 8/28. We were going to take the metro, so we drove to the station right at 7:00am when the trains start running on Saturdays. There were already hundreds of people walking towards the station, including busses dropping people off at the station. When we actually got to the station, there were about 500 people in line, so we decided to drive into DC. (I wish I'd taken a picture!) We figured even with traffic we'd get into the city earlier than we would waiting in line at the metro. It was a good decision, because there was no traffic getting into DC, and we were able to park at Arlington Cemetery and start walking across the Memorial Bridge by 8am.

We'd brought chairs and umbrellas, so we sat on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, using the umbrellas for shade from the sun.
This was the stage from the back before the rally started.

There were people as far as the eye could see even two hours before the rally started.

Where we were sitting was right next to the marker on the Lincoln Memorial with the inscription that said Martin Luther King had given his "I Have a Dream" speech.

After the rally started we discovered that we couldn't hear very well because none of the speakers or jumbotrons were facing to the back of the stage. We could see pretty well, (which is when we took the picture of Glenn Beck at the top of the post) but after Sarah Palin spoke we decided to move to a shady place where we could hear better.

These are some of the pictures we took after we moved to a spot to the left of the reflecting pool past the Korean War Memorial.
This picture was taken after the rally was over, which is why we were able to get close enough to take the picture of the stage. One thing that was pretty neat was how patient and nice everybody was at the rally. I've never been to anything with that many people, but there was no pushing and shoving, people were polite and considerate of others, and most people were positive and upbeat. I think we were all so happy to be amongst people who think alike; too often the media makes us feel like no one else in America agrees with the way we think. There weren't any political signs because Glenn Beck announced not to bring them, but lots of flags and patriotic clothes.

The message I got from Glenn Beck's speech was to focus on faith, hope and charity. He said Americans need to pray on their knees every day, and show our kids that we pray. He encouraged everyone who was listening to be honest and truthful at all times, and to make our families our highest priority. Really sounds like racist, political hate speech, doesn't it? The whole rally was more like a religious revival tent meeting (or what I imagine one would be like!)instead of anything political.

Jefferson's Monticello

We took a day trip to Thomas Jefferson's home, Monticello last Saturday. Another cool historical site that's only about 70 miles from where we live. This is a view of the garden, replanted to represent how it would have looked in Jefferson's time.
Historians know how the garden looked because Jefferson kept meticulous notes.

Monticello sits on a hill, and this is one of the views.Jefferson designed the home, and spent 40 years building it!

Kent especially liked looking at the flower gardens and the landscaping.

This path is the roof of the underground rooms where some of the work of the plantation was done.
We weren't allowed to take pictures inside the house, but this little open air veranda was a nice place to sit and relax for a few minutes. The inside of the house was filled with lots of books and many of the latest inventions that Thomas Jefferson spent his time on.
Monticello was interesting, but I didn't come away from it with the sense of Thomas Jefferson being a great statesman, like I did after touring Mount Vernon, George Washington's home.

08 August 2010

When 43,000 Boy Scouts Came to Town

Some of you may not know that the Boy Scouts of America is celebrating it's centennial this year. One of the ways they celebrated was by having a parade in downtown Washington, DC. It was the first time since 1937 that the Boy Scouts have had a parade in DC. Here are a few scenes from the parade.

Unfortunately, the huge hanging flag in the picture below got tangled up by the wind and only hung down like this for the very beginning of the parade.

The building behind me is the National Archives.

You can see the clear blue skies in all of these pictures. Believe it or not, about fifteen minutes after the parade ended a summer thunder storm blew in, and it started pouring down rain. Kent and I were safely on the metro before the downpour began.

The parade in DC was the kick-off for the National BSA Jamboree, which was held just 30 miles south of where we live. Kent took a day off work and we went to have a look around.
It was fun to see the displays and how incredibly well-organized the jamboree was. Since the jamboree was local, our newspaper carried a front-page story every day about the jamboree.
Many of the troops had created clever entry ways to their campsite, representing the state or city they were from. The one below was from out west.
Here's Kent with one of his heroes, Lord Baden Powell.

The next two entry ways are from our council, the National Capitol area.

The entry way below was one of the most popular at the jamboree. I know this because it was made by a troop in our community, and there was an article in the paper about it. The facade is an exact replica of the White House.

Below is a picture of the best looking Scout at the entire jamboree!
Kent has been a devoted Scouter for almost our entire marriage. He was called to work with the Boy Scouts when we were newlyweds, and is currently a Den Leader for the Cub Scouts in our ward.
We only spent the morning at the jamboree, but it was fun to experience a small part of such a major BSA event. We've heard and read about the jamborees at Fort AP Hill for many years, and we feel pretty lucky that we were living here when the centennial jamboree was held.