Organizers: Annual Easter sunrise service draws record crowd

 WASHINGTON (AP) -- Organizers of an annual Easter sunrise service at the Lincoln Memorial say this year's event drew a record crowd.

Aaron Crisler, a spokesman for organizers, says an estimated 8,900 people gathered at the Lincoln Memorial for the 37th annual service. That compares to last year's estimate of 6,000 people.

Pictures of Sunday's event showed thousands crowded on the Lincoln Memorial's iconic steps and the surrounding space as the sun rose on a brisk and clear morning. The service also was streamed live online.

The Capital Church, based in Fairfax County, Virginia, has been holding the sunrise service on Easter Sunday since 1979.

Church Pastor Amos Dodge says in a news release that back then, he never dreamed the event would grow so large.

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