- First Course: Seafood Stew
- Second Course: Brace of American Birds with Sour Cherry Chutney and Molasses Sweet Potatoes
- Third Course: Apple Cinnamon Sponge Cake and Sweet Cream Glacé
The Inaugural Committee continues the tradition of hosting a lunch fore the newly sworn-in President, Vice President and invited guests as we commemorate the bicentennial of the birth of Abraham Lincoln. Even in the darkest days of disunion and civil war, Lincoln participated in the public inaugural ceremonies at the Capitol. He took these occasions to appeal for national unity and a sense of common purpose, holding out the hope of reconciliation. He concluded his second inaugural address,
Reverend Daniel Coughlin, U.S. House of Representatives Chaplain, gives the benediction.
The Smithsonian Chamber Players have provided music for the inaugural luncheon since 1981. Directed by Kenneth Slowik, the group specializes in performing historical masterworks of the seventeenth through early twentieth centuries. The music they perform today is a mixture of American repertoire pieces written for early nineteenth-century presidents, as well as some of the European compositions found in the extensive music library of Thomas Jefferson
During the Inaugural Luncheon it is traditional for the President and Vice President to be presented with gifts by the Congress on behalf of the American people. The President and Vice President will each be presented with a framed official photograph taken of their swearing-in ceremony by a Senate photographer, as well as flags flown over the U.S. Capitol during the inaugural ceremonies.
The President and Vice President will also receive one-of-a-kind engraved crystal bowls, created by the Lenox Company of Lawrenceville, NJ. President Obama will receive a bowl depicting the White House on a crystal base inscribed with "Barack H. Obama, January 20, 2009, The Presidential Inaugural." Vice President Biden will receive a bowl depicting the United States Capitol, on a crystal base inscribed with "Joseph R. Biden, Jr., January 20, 2009, The Vice Presidential Inaugural." The bowls were designed by Timothy Carder and hand-cut by master glass-cutter Peter O'Rourke.
Images of Lenox, Inc. delivering the Presidential gifts to the U.S. Senate.
See images of National Statuary Hall as it was set for the Inaugural Luncheon and images of the luncheon program.