The 2020 March for Life is upon us. Every year since 1974, following the fateful Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision, pro-lifers have gathered at our nation’s capital to march on behalf of the unborn. Last year, hundreds of thousands of marchers attended from all across the U.S.
The 2019 March for Life was a great success! People from across the country, and the world, met in D.C. to march for the rights of the preborn! We are the Pro-Life Generation and we will abolish abortion! #MarchForLife pic.twitter.com/one3YoA3eF
— Students for Life of America (@StudentsforLife) January 18, 2019
So many people in one place can make navigating Washington, D.C. confusing, especially with heightened security now that President Donald Trump is confirmed to speak, the first president ever to attend the March for Life. Here’s everything you need to know about attending the march.
Time and Location
The March for Life rally will kick off at 12th Street on the National Mall with a concert performed by Christian band We Are Messengers at 11:00 a.m., followed by the rest of the pre-march rally beginning at noon. In addition to the president, who is scheduled to appear about noon, the rally features speakers such as Republican Rep. Steve Scalise from Louisiana, Democratic Louisiana state Sen. Katrina Jackson, abortion survivors Claire Culwell and Melissa Ohden, and author and pastor David Platt, among others. At the conclusion of the rally, about 1:00 p.m., the march will commence up Constitution Avenue to the Supreme Court.
Marchers can expect heightened security at this year’s march, including magnetometers. According to a Secret Service spokesperson, individuals attending the March for Life events must enter through a security checkpoint on 14th Street, NW, between Madison Drive and Jefferson Drive on the National Mall, before making their way toward 12th Street for the rally. March organizers note that entry will not be permitted before 8 a.m., but veteran marchers recommend planning to find your spot at the rally by 11:15 or 11:30, and say to expect delays at security. According to the Secret Service spokesperson, event attendees should prepare to have their items searched. The following items are prohibited.
- Animals other than service/guide animals
- Bags and signs exceeding size restrictions
- Drones and other unmanned aircraft systems
- Glass, thermal or metal containers
- Laser pointers
- Mace/Pepper spray
- Selfie Sticks
- Signs exceeding the size restrictions (20’x3’x1/4”)
- Support for signs and placards
- Toy guns
- Recreational motorized mobility devices
- Weapons of any kind
What to Bring
In the spirit of security efficiency, March for Life organizers advise, “Don’t bring anything you don’t need.” That said, break out the puffy paint and poster board and bring along your pro-life signs, but be sure they meet the above security standards. Also be sure to bundle up! Washington weather looks to be in the mid-to-high-40s Friday with a 5 to 10 percent chance of rain. I’d suggest leaving the umbrellas at home for security reasons and instead opting for a coat with a hood or emergency poncho.
One of the best ways to commute to the march is to use D.C.’s public transportation. The Smithsonian metro station, one of the closest to the event, will be closed most of the day for security reasons. Instead, use the Federal Triangle metro station, located on the blue, orange, and silver lines, or the L’Enfant Plaza metro stop, located on the blue, orange, silver, green, and yellow lines. Find up-to-date metro information here. Ground transportation will be particularly congested downtown before the march, and nearby streets will likely be closed at least a half-hour before the event for the president’s motorcade.
Food and Drink
The National Mall isn’t exactly known for its food availability. The Starbucks underneath the Trump International Hotel near the Federal Triangle metro stop is a good place to grab a cup of joe on the way to the march, however. And more food is available up Capitol Hill closer to the conclusion of the march. For local D.C. favorites, grab a slice at We, The Pizza southeast of the Supreme Court on Pennsylvania Avenue, or try District Taco further up Pennsylvania Avenue. Union Pub is another D.C. go-to.
You can find more information about the 2020 March for Life here.
This article has been updated to include security information from the Secret Service and the Smithsonian metro stop closure.