Despite bitingly cold temperatures and rain, angry and concerned citizens gathered at Freedom Plaza, directly on the route of President Bush's Inaugural Parade, waving signs and chanting slogans in support of their causes.
Issues being protested included Bush's support of the death penalty, large corporations, drilling in Alaska and voting irregularities in Florida.
"You say Ashcroft, we say no. Racist South has got to go!" shouted one woman whose hair and clothes were drenched with rain, her cry soon joined by others.
Other spontaneous chants erupted throughout the plaza many times during the day, including, "They say death row, we say hell no" and "Hail to the thief" -- the most prominent chants heard throughout the afternoon.
Police also turned out in full force for the event, placing security forces throughout the city to ensure no weapons were brought near the festivities.
And two policemen stood atop a nearby building, ready to shoot tear gas into the crowd if necessary.
Many issues were represented at the protests, but the common thread uniting the demonstrators was a general mistrust of the new president.
Some chose to express their message through costume. Characters in attendance ranged from Freaky the Clown, who dressed in red clown clothes and wore heavy white makeup over a prosthetic nose and chin, to Billionaires for Bush, a group mocking wealthy corporate Americans who support Bush.
Josh Silver of Washington, D.C., a member of Billionaires for Bush, came dressed as "Billy Bucks" in a tuxedo and gloves. He held an unlit cigar and sported a moustache drawn in black marker.