Meadville Tribune

January 20, 2013

Local Dem leader to witness inaugural activities

By Jane Smith
Special to the Tribune

MEADVILLE — When President Barack Obama takes his public oath of office for a second term Monday, the head of the Crawford County Democratic Committee and her 15-year-old daughter will be among the thousands who witness the event.

“This may be the last time for something like this,” Diane Adsit said of the decision to travel to Washington, D.C., for the inauguration festivities. Adsit said her daughter, Sarah, will soon be 16, and in four years (and nearly 20), “that is often when children soon have different schedules,” Diane said.

Sarah worked on the president’s campaign last year, her mother said, and Diane believed it was a good chance for her daughter to experience the president’s success on a personal level.

Although they are going to the inauguration, Adsit doesn’t believe they will take in any of the inaugural balls. Adsit has family and friends in the Washington area and will be staying with them for the duration of the event.

“It will be a joy to be in the crowd,” she said.

“It’s very difficult to get tickets,” she noted, adding they are going to the mall and will “join the throngs of other well-wishers.”

Adsit is no stranger to the Washington area, having grown up there. She has no concerns about riding the Metro or getting around the city. When she and her daughter are not attending the inauguration events, they will join family members for times of “music and fun.”

“I’m making it a family-and-friends event,” she said with a laugh.

It won’t be the first president that her daughter has ever seen. She was in attendance at the 2008 rally in Meadville when Bill Clinton was speaker. Clinton was no longer president at the time, but Sarah was delighted to see him.

Although several other Crawford Countians attended Obama’s inauguration four years ago, they won’t be making the trip this year. Valerie Kean Staab and her daughter, Samantha, went four years ago, but probably won’t be going this year because of some health issues, Valerie said. Armendia Dixon of Meadville also attended four years ago, but said she isn’t going this year.

Dixon said she previously committed to an event on Monday — which is Martin Luther King Jr. Day — and will honor that commitment. She was thrilled to be among the thousands who went four years ago.

Dixon recalled it was “exciting. I loved it. It was a mass of people — a sea of people everywhere.”

Patrick Donahue, vice chairman of the Crawford County Democratic Committee, won’t be going either. He said he was invited but couldn’t make the logistics work out this year, but he volunteered to help run a special collection for food and money for the Center for Family Services food bank Saturday as part of President Obama’s Day of Service.

 Another Meadville woman — Beverly Williams — is going, but attempts to contact her were not successful.