Jackson County holds its own Inauguration Ball

By Sylvia Hall - bio | email

PASCAGOULA, MS (WLOX) - Obama's inauguration is attracting so many people to Washington from all over the United States that it's become almost impossible to even find a hotel room.

That's one of the reasons the Jackson County Democrats made it possible for people to celebrate our new president right here in South Mississippi. They held their own inaugural ball at Scranton's restaurant Saturday night.

"We're calling this an Inaugural Ball," said Democratic Executive Committee member Addie Brent. "We couldn't go to the real one in Washington, D.C., so we decided to have the ball here. This really makes it exciting for us in Jackson County."

Organizers spent the day decorating for a night of food, fellowship and dancing.

"There are a lot of folks who can't go or couldn't find a place to stay," said Jackson County Democratic Executive Committee Chair Kay Sims. "We had busses planned to go, and there are still some going, but there were no rooms. There were a lot of folks who wanted to stay and celebrate, and we're giving them a place to do it."

According to those in attendance, there was plenty to celebrate.

"I think we should all be celebrating a new era, a new beginning. It's like new years. We all look forward to a new beginning, a new era. Let's all move forward; let's get it right. That's what it's like with a new administration as well," Sims said.

Democratic Executive Committee member Lonnie Hopkins said he thought the turnout Saturday was a reflection of Obama's campaign.

"You see people from different backgrounds, economic and social backgrounds, as well, and that's what it's all about," Hopkins said. "And that's what, all over the country, people are celebrating, as well."

The ball was also a way to thank all the South Mississippians who worked on the Obama campaign.

"We had an outstanding group of individuals who worked this campaign, and I think it's just to keep the flame burning," Democratic Executive Committee Member Richard Hall, Jr. Said.

Everyone there seemed energized and excited about Barack Obama's presidency.

"We look forward to a great four years," Sims said. "There are a lot of obstacles. There will be problems along the way, but if anyone can handle it, Barack Obama and Joe Biden can do it."