Trade Center luncheon marks inauguration

About 160 people attended a luncheon Tuesday in the Sycamore Room at the Columbus Convention & Trade Center, with five big-screen TVs showing the action from the nation's capital.

The lunch was sponsored by Minister Pat Parkman's Working Excellence Ministries. Parkman also works at Aflac.

Three speakers shared the podium: Mario Davis, an assistant VP at CB&T; Danielle Washington, a Columbus High School student; and Steve Chitttum, director of Frontline Ministries, a Christian home for men coming off various addictions.

Before the meal, Davis said he didn't know "if words were enough" to paint an adequate picture of this 44th inauguration. Davis was always optimistic that he'd see an African-American President in his lifetime, as the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., predicted. "It's here," said Davis, who's black.

At the edge of the dais, a cutout photo of Barack Obama saw steady traffic, as guests posed for pictures beside him.