Plenty of parties let inaugural celebrants kick up their heels.

By GAYLE COULTER and BETH CRACE State Journal Staf Published:

When it was all said and done, Ernie Fletcher reported the best part of his inauguration was "being introduced by his father" before he publicly took the oath of office.

Close to midnight Tuesday, Fletcher and first lady Glenna didn't look the least bit tired as they entered an inaugural ball for young professionals. But the new governor knows today he will begin his first full day of work.

"We have a cabinet meeting and then brunch," said Fletcher in between handshakes and posing for pictures. "I'd like to sleep in, but we have to keep working."

The Fletchers already had visited galas held in their honor at the Governor's Mansion and the Farnham Dudgeon Civic Center downtown.

Fletcher and the first lady danced to Motown band Sugar and Spice's rendition of Louis Armstrong's "What a Wonderful World" at the civic center before heading to "Kentucky's Look to the Future" inaugural ball held primarily for young professionals.

But they made their first stop in a huge tent on the grounds of the Governor's Mansion, where VIPs could rub elbows with other dignitaries such as former Govs. Brereton Jones and Louie Nunn. Local officials such as Franklin County Judge-Executive Teresa Barton, attorney William E. Johnson, and businessmen Rodney Ratliff and C. Michael Davenport also were in attendance.

For more on this story, see the latest State Journal.

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