When Obama was elected for his second term, my sister and I left Los Angeles to join the parade in Washington D.C. The streets were flooded with supporters and conversations of hope and joy. After hours of waiting in the bleak D.C. weather, Obama, his family, and administration stepped out on stage and addressed the country with the same deep hope for unity and change he showed us in his first term and campaign. There is something so special about attending an inauguration in person, but with the COVID-19 pandemic, President-elect Joe Biden, and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris will have a digital January 20 ceremony. The theme: “Our Determined Democracy: Forging a More Perfect Union.”
According to the committee, “At a time of unprecedented crisis and deep divisions, America United reflects the beginning of a new national journey that restores the soul of America, brings the country together, and creates a path to a brighter future.” They will be following similar strict protocols from the mostly virtual Democratic National Convention last summer.
Usually, you can buy a ticket to the inauguration. But this year it has been limited. In fact, members of Congress have only been given two tickets – one for themselves and a plus-one. All supporters are encouraged to stay home and watch virtually. The special ceremony will end with a virtual inauguration parade that will show Americans across the country. Ahead, is everything we know thus far.
How can we watch?
The Inauguration, set to take place at the U.S. Capitol building in Washington, D.C., will be live on every news channel all day on January 20. Swear-in ceremony for both Biden and Harris will begin at 11am EST, following the POTUS inaugural address. After Biden gives the address, Biden and Harris will oversee the Pass in Review: a military parade that is a symbol of the peaceful transfer of power from one commander-in-chief to the next. Details are still being finalized for the parade but it will most likely take place at 2 or 3pm EST on January 20.
How can we get involved?
To make it fun for viewers, the committee has released a collection of inauguration-themed social media pages and Zoom backgrounds. Additionally, they are accepting videos where people are encouraged to discuss the importance of community service and their vision for America. Videos will then appear on their website and could potentially even play during the virtual parade.
Who will perform at the parade?
According to the committee, “The parade will celebrate America’s heroes, highlight Americans from all walks of life in different states and regions, and reflect on the diversity, heritage, and resilience of the country as we begin a new American era.” You can expect to see a plethora of celebrities at Tom Hanks’ virtual parade entitled “Celebrating America.” Confirmed performers are: Demi Lovato, Justin Timberlake, Jon Bon Jovi and more.
Photo via Reuters