January 22nd, 2009
12:50 PM ET
4 years ago

iReport: 'Survivors of the purple tunnel of doom' weigh in

One iReporter submitted this “purple tunnel” photo.

One iReporter submitted this “purple tunnel” photo.

The oath of office flub wasn't the only Inauguration Day snafu: Thousands of ticket-holders were trapped in a tunnel just yards away from the site of President Obama's swearing-in. Already, more than three thousand have joined the "Survivors of the Purple Tunnel of Doom" Facebook group - and many have posted images of their experience on iReport.com.

Were you a purple ticket-holder? Share your Inauguration Day experience on

Filed under: Inauguration • iReport
soundoff (89 Responses)
  1. Brian from GA

    Did you see the disgusting mess they left behind? I've seen photos of the mall, covered in all kinds of garbage and trash. The people just threw it down where they stood. There were even some American flags trampled into the dust. They just threw them down after they were done waving them.


    January 22, 2009 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  2. simp

    These people need to shut up. Nobldy care, they are just trying to be a negative mark on this wonderful occasion. At least you were there, in the crowds for this history making moment some people are never satisfied now you idiots have a web site to complain on, shut up we can care less.

    January 22, 2009 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  3. Once You Vote Black

    The best part was the poem by Rev. Lowery. It was history and if you were in the tunnel you were part of history too. Be happy you were there. I was hoping the helocopter with Bush would go the way everthing esle he touched did.

    January 22, 2009 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  4. believe

    it happens, get over it.

    January 22, 2009 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  5. Mickie

    They announced way in advance on the news that even if you had a ticket, you had to get there very early because once there were a certain number of people, the events would be closed. Some people actually arrived at 4:00 a.m. to wait in lines, so that's the price you pay for wanting to be part of millions showing up for an historic event.

    January 22, 2009 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  6. John from Seattle

    Can someone tell me whether this was the 3rd street tunnel or the 395? My son and I travelled through both of them trying to get to the yellow gate. This picture looks like the end of the 3rd street tunnel, but that put you out by the blue gate. We eventually got to the yellow gate and into our seats, but not after considerable extra walking and much confusion.


    January 22, 2009 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  7. Julia

    Knowing people who were stuck in this tunnel (that I drive everyday)...and also being somone stuck at the 7th street entrance prior to entering the Mall from 18th street, I still maintain, for the number of people – it was well handled. Yes there could be improvements, and yes it is unfortunate that some people couldn't get to their ticketed area – but overall the mood and attitude of the crowds made this day extra special. The people that I talked to, on the mall, who couldn't get to their ticketed area, were still excited to be there, and in great spirits.

    January 22, 2009 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  8. alvino

    THE OLD TIMER is one sick bastard.

    January 22, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  9. Mari




    January 22, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  10. KelBel

    Be thankful you had the opportunity to attend. Get over yourself and get back to work! Remember...Big Brother is watching!

    January 22, 2009 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  11. tfrmaz

    THE OLD TIMER: I have one word for you RACIST PIG! We'll actually that was TWO words.

    January 22, 2009 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  12. Kay

    Overall, the planning for this huge event went off superbly. Sometimes things beyond our control happen. I'm sure the people involved in the tunnel snafu will realize this when they cool down and think about it.

    January 22, 2009 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  13. Virginia

    They could have stayed home and watched on TV. And they wouldn't now be all ticked off and probably will start blaming it on discrimination!

    January 22, 2009 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  14. EnoughAlready

    Please Post:

    THE OLD TIMER – Are you kidding !?!? Is that why all those people showed up in Dallas in 1963? And you are the fabric of our nation...no wonder we're in tatters! UNBELIEVABLE!

    January 22, 2009 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  15. Bobdo

    Goes to show you what happens when the Dems try to run someting. It was bound to get messed up.

    January 22, 2009 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  16. JA/TN

    be realistic people, i wasn't there, but expected some to be turned away, and that being one reason i didn't attend, quit complaining

    January 22, 2009 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  17. Peggy

    You people need to get a life. Obama is not a God and he difinitely shouldn't be worshipped as if he was.....We must be the laughing stock of the whole world.

    January 22, 2009 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  18. Barbara

    I was so disappointed at not being able to maneuver a ticket in any way humanly possible. Now I am happy to have made other plans
    which were an incredible experience.
    I would urge this unfortunate group to network and request a special
    visit as a group to the white house at a later date. Our new President is anxious to have an "open door" and had 200 people in yesterday... You should all write to eachother and the President and your congressional reps to arrange this.
    You certainly deserve some reward for your patience and loyalty

    January 22, 2009 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  19. Linda in MS

    Hey, Old Timer

    The word is pompous, not pompas. Go drink your prune juice and while it is working read a dictionary, please. You are a mean old man.

    January 22, 2009 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  20. Barbara

    Dear "old Timer"
    You are a vicious, evil Bastard.... What a disgusting thing to put in writing! If it weren't for my new found vow to love my enemy I would wish you dead as well !

    January 22, 2009 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  21. Michael Houston, Texas

    You got to be kidding me Old Timer! Really? And they say Matin Luther King's dream has been fulfilled! Now regarding topic: My first duty station when I entered the Navy was at NNMC in Bethesda, when I was allowed to live off base, I use to catch the train at NIH and it was always crowded and hectic, and thatr station at the time was one of the least busiest. So quit crying "purple people" you sound just as stupid as those so called PUMA nuts.

    January 22, 2009 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  22. Barbara

    One LAST comment to Virginia,
    No one is crying discrimination... Get over yourself you idiot. Know this:
    There are millions of white people like me that welcome the intellect and integrity of our new President.
    Maybe in another 200 years we will have exhausted the bigotry gene you seem to carry . UGH!

    January 22, 2009 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  23. tired of corporate politics

    kathleen, seriously? "I was among this sea of love, all marching in history, ...I love every step I made and above all adored every step I heard. "

    A citizen with blinders on is not a good thing. It is all of our duties to keep an eye on goverment. When we stop being skeptical, then we will be scammed and enslaved.

    Be careful what you say or your govermnet will find it useful to keep you in a tunnel indefinitely!

    January 22, 2009 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  24. tfrmaz

    Bobdo: Can't we all just get along? The Bush era is now over, Thank God! Lets move forward and all do our parts, as well. I am a Democrat and will always remain that way. Dems are very diverse. Unlike the old established guard of the RNC. So, what does that say about YOU, Bobdo? Everyone is created equal. And everyone deserves a chance. I made the Choice to Vote for Barack Obama as did millions of others, both Black, White, Green, Blue, Yellow, etc. So Chill out!

    January 22, 2009 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  25. Claire, NH

    I had two blue tickets and was not able to get in the ceremony. I think something should be done and quickly.

    January 22, 2009 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
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