Beware of Christmas Tree Lighting Traffic, Security

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White House

Tonight, President Obama and his family will turn on the lights for the 93rd annual National Christmas Tree Lighting held at the Ellipse in President’s Park. While hundreds will attend, and thousands more will watch at home, D.C. workers and residents will have to deal with the traffic nightmare presented every time the White House holds a major event. Below is a list of road closures so that you can avoid traffic and get home quickly tonight, maybe even to turn on the tree lighting ceremony when you get home.

– 17th Street, NW closed from Independence Avenue to New York Avenue, NW
– 15th Street, NW closed from Independence Avenue to New York Avenue, NW
– Constitution Avenue from 14th Street to 18th Street, NW
– Pennsylvania Avenue from 14th Street to 15th Street, NW
– Madison Drive from 14th Street to 15th Street
– Jefferson Drive from 14th Street to 15th Street

Anyone with a ticket to the ceremony should beware of heightened security, which restricts a large number of items allowed into the event. The list of restricted items includes large bags and backpacks, aerosols, coolers and balloons in addition to obvious leave-at-home items like laser pointers, weapons, ammunition, toy guns, mace, explosives and pets.

Guests can enter the ceremony through a secured entrance on 17th St. NW.

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