FOR THE WEEK OF JAN. 19, 2009
Inaugural ceremony, celebrations open new era in Washington, D.C.
People from every part of America are jamming Washington. Find coverage about visitors from your city or state.
Anyone can share the inaugural spirit through local events, broadcast coverage and online activities. See if you can spot ways to get involved.
Like Election Day last Nov. 4, this Inauguration Day is especially historic. Discuss what distinguishes printed newspapers from other media at such an occasion.
This Tuesday is like the first day of a school year for Barack Obama and Joe Biden. Their desks are clear, grading hasn't started yet, hopes are high and anything can happen.
Events begin outside the U.S. Capitol, where Chief Justice John Roberts will swear in the country's new leaders. At noon, Obama stands alongside his wife Michelle and daughters Malia and Sasha, places his hand on a Bible used by Abraham Lincoln at his 1861 first inauguration, and takes this oath:
The ceremony also will feature "Hail to the Chief" played by a military band, a 21-gun salute from Army howitzers and an inaugural address setting the administration's tone. An African American professor from Yale University will recite a poem she wrote for the event. Earlier, the invocation will be given by Pastor Rick Warren of Orange County, Calif., an opponent of gay marriage whose selection angers some Obama allies.
Senator says: ""The inauguration of the president is one of the most important rituals of our democracy" -- Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif.
Historian says: "There is a palpable connection between Mr. Lincoln the great emancipator and having this Bible used by our first African American president." -- Clark Evans, Library of Congress curator
Let's dance: Obama, Biden and their wives will dance at least briefly at 10 formal balls on the evening of Jan. 20, attended by donors who helped finance the day's events. They also may show up at other dance parties around the capital.
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