Hurricane Irene has caused officials in Washington, D.C., to postpone the dedication of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial.
The event had been scheduled to take place 11 a.m. Sunday on the National Mall. Since it was not possible to move the outdoor celebration to another location, officials decided it was best to cancel the event.
"In consultation with the National Park Service, the mayor's office, and FEMA, it is with a heavy heart and enormous disappointment that we announce, that in the interest of public safety, we are forced to change our plans," Harry E. Johnson, Sr., president and CEO of the foundation that constructed the memorial, said.
"I remained optimistic all day, but mother nature is mother nature," he added. "I'm very disappointed and hurt, really. We all are."
President Obama and more than 250,000 people were expected to attend the event.
Organizers of the event must consult with the National Park Service and obtain a new permit before they a new dedication date can be scheduled.