Your guide to all things Inauguration Day

WASHINGTON — Good morning, Insiders. Downtown D.C. is buzzing with Donald Trump supporters, protesters, police, Secret Service and the journalists covering it all.

Trump’s official schedule is jam-packed. Here’s what you’ll see on TV (and what you won’t):

Breakfast, prayer service and Obama

Trump, his family and other guests are expected to partake in a private breakfast and prayer service first thing Friday morning. The latter will take place at St. John’s Episcopal Church, near the White House.

From there, the Trumps will meet the Obama family at the White House for a private coffee beginning at 9:30 a.m.. Donald Trump and Barack Obama are then expected to follow tradition and ride together from the White House to the Capitol.

Inaugural ceremony 

Members of Congress, dignitaries and thousands of onlookers are currently assembling on the West Front of the Capitol for the official festivities. The U.S. Marine Band will kick off the proceedings, followed by a reading from several religious figures and performances from the Missouri State University Chorale and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.

The swearing-in portion of the ceremony begins at 11:30 a.m. Vice president-elect Mike Pence will be sworn-in by Associate Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, a native of Pin Point, Ga. Shortly thereafter, Chief Justice John Roberts will administer the oath of office to Trump around noon. Trump will then deliver his inaugural speech, before more readings, a benediction and the national anthem.

Obamas’ departure

Shortly after the official ceremony concludes, the Obama family is expected to say farewell and depart from the East Front of the Capitol via helicopter, resuming their lives as private citizens. The helicopter departure is a tradition that stretches back to President Gerald Ford.

The helicopter will ferry the Obamas to Joint Base Andrews in suburban Maryland. Barack Obama is expected to give a short speech to former staff before hopping on a government flight to Palm Springs, Calif., a favorite vacation spot of the family’s, for some time off.

Congressional luncheon

Soon after Trump and Pence are sworn in, they’ll be ferried into the U.S. Capitol, where Congress’ inaugural committee will host them for a private luncheon in the ornate Statuary Hall. Also on the guest list are Supreme Court justices, Cabinet nominees and members of congressional leadership. We understand Georgia U.S. Rep. Doug Collins, a new member of the GOP leadership team, will be there.

The three-course menu includes Maine lobster and Gulf Coast shrimp with saffron sauce; grilled angus beef with dark chocolate and juniper jus; and chocolate souffle with cherry vanilla ice cream. The Smithsonian Chamber Players and a brass quintet from the U.S. Coast Guard will serenade the group.


Trump and Pence will first meet a group of soldiers assembled at the East Front of the Capitol. From there, they’ll lead the inaugural procession from the Capitol down Pennsylvania Avenue to the White House. Thousands of military personnel, supporters and protesters will be lining the streets. Once they arrive at the White House, Trump, Pence and their families will watch the rest of the parade from a private viewing stand. View the full list of participants here.

First actions

Friday isn’t only reserved for pomp and circumstance. Trump is expected to sign a handful of executive orders aimed at setting the tone for his presidency. Exactly which actions he’ll take is a closely-guarded secret. It’s possible he could target President Barack Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, which shields from deportation thousands of young people brought to the U.S. illegally as children. He may also immediately impose a ban on members of his administration from becoming lobbyists for five years.

The Senate is also expected to convene and confirm at least two of Trump’s Cabinet nominees. Retired Gens. James Mattis and John Kelly are virtually guaranteed to be approved as Trump’s defense and homeland security secretaries, respectively. Senate leaders could also cut a deal to approve more Cabinet picks. Elaine Chao for transportation secretary and Mike Pompeo for CIA director are most likely to be in the mix.

Inaugural Balls 

The three official inauguration galas Trump plans to attend kick off at 7 p.m. Two are being held at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in downtown Washington. The third, the Armed Services Ball, will be at the National Building Museum. Trump is expected to dance and make a speech at all three.

Meanwhile, scores of other unofficial balls will also be taking place across town. Georgia’s state gala was held yesterday.

Read more AJC inauguration coverage:

Inauguration Day: Donald Trump to promise fast start for a divided nation

Why Jimmy Carter will attend Donald Trump’s inauguration

Led by John Lewis, at least 65 House Democrats boycott inauguration

What to expect from Donald Trump on his first day in office

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