Posts tagged: inaugural ball
OLYMPIA — The location of the Inaugural Ball, which has been the subject of much kvetching since it was announced several months ago, has changed. It will be back at the Capitol.
The Capitol has been the traditional location for the inaugural celebration, and the domed Legislative Building even has a large reception room with a dance floor (usually covered with a rug) for the inaugural dance.
A few months ago, however, the Inaugural Ball Committee announced it would hold the ball at the St. Martin's University gymnasium because of concerns over security and traffic control at the Capitol.
Admittedly, parking is not ample, and some streets around the Capitol aren't very wide.
But the announcement generated some biting complaints. A petition to return the ball to the Capitol circulated. One high-ranking legislator said he wouldn't be going out to the because “I already attended a prom, in high school.” Some incoming office-holders, who will be inaugurated that day, also weren't pleased.
The committee held firm — until Friday afternoon, when it announced the ball is being moved back to the Capitol grounds “through a cooperative effort” with Gov. elect Jay Inslee's transition team and the Department of Enterprise Services.
“The logistical concerns that first demanded a move away from the Capitol have been discussed with the relevant players, managed and changes have been made that will help with accessibility and security,” spokeswoman Lisa Cosmillo, the committee spokeswoman, said in a press release. St. Martins “graciouisly released” the committee from its commitment.
Addressing the crowd at his inaugural ball, Spokane Mayor David Condon said he will strive to be like Jim Chase, the popular mayor who led the city when Condon was a boy.
More than 400 people attended Condon's $75-a-plate Our Town Gala on Saturday night at the Lincoln Center in North Spokane. Proceeds will go to the Chase Youth Foundation, the financial arm of the youth commission that Chase fought to create when he was mayor in the 1980s.
Condon praised Chase for the stability he brought to the city as well as his gentle nature. He said the event, which was attended by many political, business and other leaders, raised more than $20,000 for the foundation.
Last year, former Mayor Mary Verner opted to eliminate the city's Youth Department, which oversaw the Chase Youth Commission. Condon supported the decision because of the city's financial problems. But Saturday, he vowed that the city would maintain a strong relationship with the commission even if taxpayer funding is much smaller.
“I am unwilling to let budget pressures push aside” the commission, he said.
Three Chase Youth commissioners addressed the crowd after a buffet-style dinner.
Spokane Mayor David Condon will host a formal dinner and dance on Jan. 28 to celebrate the start of his mayoral term and raise money for the Chase Youth Foundation.
Erik Nelson, president of the foundation, said invitations will be mailed soon but that the event will be open to anyone willing to pay the $75-per-person price. The foundation will get all the revenue, some of which will be used to cover costs.
The ball will be held Jan. 28 at the new McKinstry building, which is a renovated railroad building along the Spokane River near Washington State University-Spokane.
It will be called the 2012 Our Town Gala, Nelson said. Condon used the slogan “This is our town” throughout his campaign.
The Chase Youth Foundation will take on greater responsibility this year after Verner and the Spokane City Council opted to eliminate the city's Youth Department, which worked with the foundation and Chase Youth Commission on youth programs and events.
Folks who don't get invitations but want tickets to the gala can email Nelson at firstname.lastname@example.org.