St. Louis Public Radio News
10:15 am
Tue January 13, 2009

Nixon caps off first day in office with Inaugural Ball

Jefferson City, MO – Several hundred revelers packed into the State Capitol Rotunda Monday night for Governor Jay Nixon's Inaugural Ball.

The event began with a nearly two-hour grand march by House and Senate members, statewide elected officials, significant others, and finally the Governor and First Lady Georganne.

The First Couple danced the first dance, to The Missouri Waltz, the official state song. Before the song ended, the Nixons were joined on the dance floor by several other state officials and their guests.

When The Missouri Waltz ended, everyone in attendance was invited to dance.

State Senator Frank Barnitz (D, Lake Spring) hit the dance floor with his wife and youngest daughter.


"Seems to be a lot bigger crowd right now than what we've had in the past, but it's always a good time to be down here," Barnitz said.

Among those in attendance was former State House Member Judy Baker of Columbia. She wished the new governor well.

"I think he's going to do a great job, and I'm looking forward to seeing how he rolls out the agenda...there's a lot of exuberance here in the hallways about having some new and fresh vision and new ideas," Baker said.

Baker, a Democrat, recently lost a bid for Missouri's 9th U.S. Congressional seat to Republican Blaine Luetkemeyer.

The Inaugural Ball capped off a day of activities following Nixon taking the oath of office as the Show-me State's 55th governor.