The royal duo reunited in the Big Apple for a courtside Nets date with Jay Z and Beyonce at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn Monday evening, hours after the Duchess of Cambridge toured a child development center in Harlem with New York City's first lady, Chirlane McCray, and her husband, Prince William, met with President Barack Obama in Washington, D.C.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge arrived at their seats early in the second half of the game against the Cleveland Cavaliers. Cleveland's Kevin Love was shooting a free throw when fans stood and roared as the couple walked along the sideline to seats near center court.
LeBron James had called being watched by them as part of their first trip to New York "an honor'' on Sunday.
The couple met earlier at Barclays Center with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, celebrating a partnership between the Royal Foundation and the league to raise awareness about the importance of international wildlife conservation.
Crowds of officials began gathering near one of the tunnels to the arena floor at halftime in preparation of the royals' move to their seats. They were shown on the overhead videoboard with about 2 minutes left in the period, getting another loud cheer when Kate waved to the camera.
After the third quarter, Jay-Z and Beyonce were led across the court to meet them. Jay-Z was formerly a part-owner of the Nets and has kept his seats next to the team's bench.
Protesters upset over a Staten Island grand jury's decision not to indict an NYPD officer in the chokehold death of Eric Garner gathered outside the arena Monday night, seeking to take advantage of the added media attention Will and Kate would attract.
The royals also attended an early evening reception highlighting wildlife conservation efforts with former U.S. first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton and her daughter, Chelsea Clinton.
During the event at the British consul general's residence, William made a brief speech on the plight of the world's most iconic species being ``butchered in the name of trinkets and medicine'' before ending it on a lighter note.
"I'm off to shoot some hoops now, or whatever it is you Americans say,'' he quipped.
On Monday morning, crowds cheered as Kate emerged from a dark SUV on the northeast corner of 110th Street and Madison Avenue, wearing a black dress with cream-colored detailing by British fashion brand Goat. She smiled and waved to the scores of royal watchers as media angled for the best spot to capture a photo of the pregnant princess, who greeted McCray and headed inside.
Kate met with children and staffers at the Northside Center for Child Development, wrapping some presents for the children and leaving the staff with an impression of a down-to-earth duchess, clinical intake coordinator Jennifer Hogan said.
"There are many places she could have picked in New York, and we're very proud she visited us," Hogan said. The 68-year-old organization was co-founded by educator and psychologist Kenneth B. Clark, whose pioneering study on the effects of racial discrimination was cited in the Supreme Court's 1954 decision to strike down public school segregation.
After about an hour-long visit, the duchess and the first lady exchanged handshakes with several mothers -- and leaned down to shake hands with children -- who gathered outside as the two left.
The royal couple arrived in the city Sunday, their first official visit to the U.S. since a 2011 trip to California and their first joint trip to New York. They're staying at Manhattan's Carlyle Hotel, a favorite of Will's mother, the late Princess Diana, when she visited the city in the 1990s.
The Game Plan
Properly known as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, the royals are making their first official visit to the United States since a 2011 jaunt to California. (Prince William made a personal trip to a friend's Memphis, Tennessee, wedding this May with his brother, Prince Harry.)
The duke and duchess have been looking forward to a three-day trip involving issues "close to both of their hearts," a spokeswoman said.
Kate is expecting the couple's second child in April, but the royals' schedule is packed with plans ranging from paying respects at the National Sept. 11 Memorial and Museum to taking in a Brooklyn Nets game against the LeBron James-led Cleveland Cavaliers.
Other events promote British involvement in New York's technology and creative sectors and spotlight the couple's charitable interests in wildlife conservation and child development. Among other commitments, Will will head to a World Bank conference in Washington to discuss fighting illegal trade in wildlife parts, while Kate will tour a New York child development center with the city's first lady, Chirlane McCray.
Prince William and his wife also are due to join Tom Hanks, opera singer Renee Fleming and others at a black-tie, up-to-$10,000-per-seat scholarship fundraiser for the University of St. Andrews, the Scottish institution where the royal couple met and earned degrees.
As an itinerary, "it's trying to cover a lot of points in a short period of time," but it signals the couple's interest in forging ties with Americans who share their philanthropic ideas, says Joe Little, the managing editor of Majesty magazine.
NYC, Royalty and 'Royals'
Spain's Queen Letizia toured a public school just in September. Among British royals, Queen Elizabeth II visited in 2010, and Prince Harry hit both New York and Washington last year. The queen's daughter, Princess Anne, opened an exhibition of the Magna Carta in Washington last month.
But the duke and duchesses' watched-round-the-world wedding and parenthood have made them particular magnets for public attention, as a 21st-century royal family in which an heir to the throne drives his newborn home from the hospital himself.
Mayor de Blasio rose to political prominence pledging to champion the middle class — a point underscored when he took his victory-party stage last year to "Royals," pop star Lorde's hit that declares "we'll never be royals ... That kind of luxe just ain't for us." But de Blasio has praised Will and Kate's visit, noting their charitable work and saying he'd like to "see how we can work together."
Traveling, With a Title
Their retinue includes two private secretaries, two media aides, an adviser, a personal assistant, and a privately paid hairdresser for Middleton. The British government's Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Royal Foundation — the couple's and Prince Harry's charity — and St. Andrews are splitting other trip costs.
While the royals promote causes, many eyes will doubtless be on Middleton's clothes. A style icon whose outfits can sell out in stores within hours after she's seen in them, she's won fashion-lovers' affection partly because she doesn't always choose complex or custom-made attire: "There's a connection — you can get it," or at least a copy of it, says Michael Casey, a professor at New York's Fashion Institute of Technology.
While Kate has been known to favor such designers as British fashion house Alexander McQueen, London-based Roksanda Ilincic, the Brazilian Issa and the British upscale fashion brand LK Bennett, look for her to pack some American labels for the trip: It's a tradition to pay some fashion tributes to a host country.