Thanks to Congress, You Can Sled Down Capitol Hill

Capitol Police used to reluctantly enforce a ban
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jan 21, 2016 4:53 PM CST
Thanks to Congress, You Can Sled Down Capitol Hill
Xueyu Zeng, of Towson, Md., sweeps snow from a walkway in Towson, Thursday, Jan. 21, 2016, after a snow fell the night before.. The northern mid-Atlantic region, including Baltimore, Washington and Philadelphia, is preparing for a weekend snowstorm that is now forecast to reach blizzard conditions.    (Steve Ruark)

It took an act of Congress, but people are now welcome to sled down Capitol Hill. With a major blizzard bearing down on Washington, the US Capitol Police on Thursday said they won't be enforcing—as in years past—a longstanding sledding ban. In legislation that cleared Congress last month, lawmakers instructed the police to not enforce the decades-old ban. In prior years, sheepish Capitol police officers reluctantly enforced the ban.

Last year, however, revelers orchestrated a "sled-in"—with the full support of Washington's nonvoting delegate, Democrat Eleanor Holmes Norton. The police stood aside, avoiding the embarrassment and bad media coverage that would have come from breaking up the fun. The police say they'll still be there this year, but this time they'll be watching to make sure the kids are having a safe time of it. Click for the rundown on the East Coast storm. (More Washington, DC stories.)

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