Obama Plans "Neighborhood Inaugural Ball"

President-elect Barack Obama's inaugural committee announced today a new kind of inaugural ball – a "neighborhood" ball that incorporates interactive and Web-based elements.

According to the press release, tickets for the ball will be free or affordable, and a portion of the tickets will be set aside to residents of the Obamas' new neighborhood — Washington, D.C.

(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
In the release, Mr. Obama said: "This is an inauguration for all Americans. I wanted to make sure that we had an event that would be open to our new neighborhood here in Washington, D.C., and also neighborhoods across the country."

The inaugural committee said that people attending "neighborhood balls across the country" will be able to participate in this "premier event" via Webcasting and text messaging.

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The release from the inaugural committee is below. You can also click here to read more on plans for the inaugural balls.

PRESIDENT-ELECT OBAMA TO HOST NEIGHBORHOOD INAUGURAL BALL

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In keeping with his commitment to make this inaugural celebration open and accessible to all Americans, President-elect Barack Obama will host the first-ever "Neighborhood Inaugural Ball" during this year's inaugural celebration. The ball will be the premier event of inauguration evening on January 20th and will take place at the Washington Convention Center.

With tickets available free or at an affordable price, it is the first official inaugural ball of its kind to be held during a presidential inauguration. A portion of tickets for this event will be set aside for District of Columbia residents. The ball will also feature a robust interactive component, including webcasting and text messaging, to link neighborhoods across the country with the new President and this premier event. The PIC will release more details soon about using technology to allow Americans who are attending neighborhood balls across the country to participate actively in this celebration.

"This is an Inauguration for all Americans," said President-elect Obama. "I wanted to make sure that we had an event that would be open to our new neighborhood here in Washington, D.C., and also neighborhoods across the country. Michelle and I look forward to joining our fellow Americans across the country during this very special event."

The Presidential Inaugural Committee will release additional details regarding ticket distribution and interactive features soon.

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