Just as they did four years ago, supporters of President Barack Obama are organizing an inaugural ball for the Quad-Cities, to be held the same night as festivities in Washington, D.C.
The Quad-City event will be Jan. 21 at the RiverCenter in Davenport.
Organizers say the ball recognizes the volunteers who worked for the president’s re-election campaign, as well as the fact he launched his successful 2008 presidential campaign in Iowa by winning its precinct caucuses. It also gives people who don’t have the money or the time to attend the official festivities a place to go.
“We feel we’ve got a lot to celebrate,” said Cathy Bolkcom, a longtime Obama supporter from LeClaire who was an organizer of both balls. She added it is a nonpartisan event.
“The president’s a big tent kind of guy,” she said. “He wants everybody to come to the table, and so do we.”
She said a couple hundred tickets have been sold so far, and that interest began the night of the Nov. 6 election when people began texting her after the president was declared the winner.
The tickets are $40, and the event will be from 6 p.m. to midnight.
Providing music will be Anthony Catalfano, a pianist and composer, and the Funktastic Five. A dinner will be served. Beer and soft drinks will be provided, and there will be a cash bar. Hotel Blackhawk also is offering discounted rooms for that night, organizers say.
Bolkcom said the ticket price doesn’t cover the cost of the event, so they are getting sponsors to help. If there is any money left over, she said, it will go to the homeless shelter operated by Churches United of the Quad-Cities Area.
Four years ago, more than 500 people bought tickets, the vast majority in the week before the ball. The night of that event, some people had to be turned away. Bolkcom says organizers now are encouraging people to buy tickets by Jan. 15.