Update: This story was updated at 3:13 p.m. on Nov. 26 to include information on the City of Frankfort closing.
In two weeks, Kentucky will inaugurate a new governor and the 61st inauguration ceremony will happen right here in the Capital City.
The official schedule for Gov.-Elect Andy Beshear’s inauguration day on Dec. 10 was announced on Tuesday.
Beshear, the Democratic attorney general, received at least 5,000 more votes than incumbent Matt Bevin during the Nov. 5 general election.
This year’s inaugural theme is “Team Kentucky,” and all inaugural events are free and open to the public.
Local officials have been preparing for the inauguration for weeks.
Franklin County Schools and Frankfort Independent Schools will close Dec. 10 as well as Franklin County and City of Frankfort offices. Tuesday garbage pickup in the city will be collected on Wednesday.
Frankfort Mayor Bill May along with Robin Antenucci, executive director of the Frankfort/Franklin County Tourist and Convention Commission, and Tommy Russell, director of emergency management for Frankfort, have been heavily involved with the inauguration planning process.
May said he and his wife along with Franklin County Judge-Executive Huston Wells and his wife will join a group of Frankfort citizens in continuing the tradition of bringing a white cake and ham biscuits to the governor’s mansion the morning of the inauguration.
May will also present Beshear and his family with a gift from the City of Frankfort.
May and Wells’ inauguration day activities will not stop there. They will also participate in the first public event of the day.
Beginning at 7:30 a.m., an inaugural breakfast reception will be held at the Thomas D. Clark Center for Kentucky History in Frankfort. Beverages and a light breakfast will be provided and the museum will be open to tour.
Following breakfast, a non-denominational worship service will take place at First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) at 316 Ann Street in Frankfort.
Beshear and Lt. Gov.-elect Jacqueline Coleman will be joined by their families in open horse-drawn carriages provided by the Kentucky Horse Park for the parade.
Kentucky educators will serve as Grand Marshals. The final parade route has not been released, but the parade will be from 10 a.m. to noon and will begin at High Street and will end in front of the Capitol Building.
Kentucky Educational Television (KET) will be broadcasting the parade live.
Following the parade, the inaugural prelude will begin on the Capitol steps at 1 p.m. with music from the 2020nd Army Band, Harlan Boys Choir, North Pulaski Middle School Honors Choir and Louisville Eastern High School Chamber of Singers.
The official swearing-in ceremony begins on the grand front steps of the Capitol at 2 p.m. The ceremony will be emceed by Kentucky educators Cathy Carter, Scott Collier and Laura Hartke, and will feature musical performances by Patricia Mathison, Jason Clayborn, the Harlan Boys Choir and Linkin’ Bridge.
May will give the welcoming remarks. This is his fifth inauguration in his time as Frankfort mayor.
May said everyone is looking forward to welcoming Beshear, his family, the new administration and visitors to Frankfort.
Coleman will be sworn in first, with Justice Michelle M. Keller of the Kentucky Supreme Court administering the oath of office. Beshear will then be sworn in by Kentucky Supreme Court Chief Justice John D. Minton Jr.
This will also be broadcast on KET.
Immediately following the ceremony, the Capitol Building will be open for all to tour.
Before the evening’s inaugural balls begin, The Grand March will take place at 8 p.m. The Grand March is a formal presentation of the governor, lieutenant governor and other constitutional officers. Music will be provided by the Louisville Orchestra. The black tie optional event will take place in the Capitol Rotunda at 8 p.m. Doors open at 7 p.m.
The Grand March will be shown on KET.
To conclude the evening, there will be two side-by-side inaugural balls next to the Capitol. The parties are free and open to the public and black tie optional. Kentucky State Parks will cater the events and will be serving some of the Commonwealth’s favorite foods.
Those planning to attend any of the inauguration events are encouraged to RSVP at kentucky.gov/inauguration. A detailed schedule is also available on the website.