At DC rallies, Stewart to ask donors to restore National Mall, Colbert pushes school charity

By Brett Zongker, AP
Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Stewart asks donors to help restore National Mall

WASHINGTON — Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert are taking on causes more serious than a mock feud when they lead dueling political rallies on the National Mall later this month.

Stewart, host of Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show,” announced Monday on NPR that he will ask attendees at his Oct. 30 “Rally to Restore Sanity” to help restore the National Mall. The park and its memorials have a $400 million backlog of deferred maintenance.

On the event’s website, Stewart wrote that ralliers should pick up after themselves, “in the name of sanity and reasonableness.”

“We feel it’s important to preserve this historic site for future rallies and for future Americans to rally on!” Stewart wrote. “But just in case you accidentally, like, put a beverage down on the Mall’s coffee table without using a coaster, we figure that giving a little something back to the National Mall might, at least, soften the blow.”

Colbert, host of “The Colbert Report,” is asking attendees at his “Keep Fear Alive” march to donate to Donors Choose, which raises money for school supplies.

The mall hosts more visitors each year than Yellowstone, the Grand Canyon and Yosemite national parks combined. Thousands of events held there each year have compacted the soil into virtual concrete where grass can’t grow. Its reflecting pools are filled with stagnant water, and many sidewalks are crumbling.

Stewart selected the Trust for the National Mall as his charity of choice.

“The exposure that the mall’s condition is going to receive as a result of his leadership and his viewership is tremendous,” the nonprofit group’s president, Caroline Cunningham, said Tuesday.


Rally to Restore Sanity:

March to Keep Fear Alive:

Trust for the National Mall:

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