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Around Hancock

January 21, 2009|By ANNE WEATHERHOLT / 301-678-6888

A new day dawns



"There is no precedent for this president," says my dad.

My dad will be turning 90 in May and is one of "The Greatest Generation:" raised during the Depression, proud World War II veteran (10th Mountain Division, Bronze Star, Silver Star and Purple Heart), then went to work as a college administrator and professor at an historical interracial work-study college in Eastern Kentucky.

My niece, Laurel, was staying with us for the weekend and covering the inauguration for the University of Chicago, where she is in her senior year. She went to D.C. every day to participate in various activities, and had gotten a coveted inauguration ticket from her Wisconsin home congressional office.

So through the eyes and impressions of three generations, we called back and forth Tuesday, sharing our thoughts and reactions.

A good strong speech, dad thought.

Crowd control could have been a bit better, said Laurel, who left at 2 a.m. to drive to Shady Grove for the Metro ride.

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She and her boyfriend waited in line for a few hours for the standing section near the reflecting pool. They had also been in Grant Park in Chicago the night that President Obama accepted the nomination and mentioned their excitement at the new hope for new ways to tackle old problems.

For me, a remarkable shift in the general look and feel of other presidential changes of power: More people of color and ethnicity, more women, inclusive language, many ages - especially with the darling Obama daughters - and history in the making with the eyes of Lincoln and the memory of Martin Luther King Jr. spanning the distance from the Lincoln Memorial to the Capitol.

Shifts of power and changes of administration are a part of the American fabric.

Let us hope that the same grace and dignity shown today will prevail for a long time in both our country and our community.

Girl Scout cookies



Girl Scout Cookie pre-sales have begun. Yes, those delicious treats that come once a year are available from your local Girl Scouts.

Girl Scouts of the Shawnee Council benefit from cookie sales, using the funds for their programs which support young women in their education and development. For information about ordering, call 1-888-263-8834.

Civil War historian



Alpine Station Civil War Roundtable will meet this evening at 7 at the Hancock Museum in the basement of Town Hall. Steve French will speak on African Explorer Henry Stanley and his Civil War experiences. The public is welcome to attend.

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