And while the March for Science was on the surface nonpartisan, politics bubbled up again and again.
"Insects don't see borders and they can climb walls," Jessica Ware, an evolutionary biologist at Rutgers University, said to applause.
"We must teach our children about evolution. We must teach our children to love insects and arachnids," Ware said, to howls of approval.
Because it was a march, protest signs abounded, from the funny ("I just came for the pi" and "Without science, it's just fiction" ) to the sincere ("Science Saves Lives").