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Kidsday: The presidential inauguration

Every four years, a president is elected by the people of the United States. The presidential inauguration is when the new president formally takes the oath of office, gives a speech and celebrates the beginning of the new term. Today is the day President Barack Obama has his second swearing-in ceremony.

The U.S. Constitution says the president has to take the oath of office at the inauguration. However, many other traditions have grown around Inauguration Day. Since Thomas Jefferson's second inauguration, on March 4, 1805, it has been a tradition to hold a parade up Pennsylvania Avenue after the president takes the oath of office. The only president after Jefferson who did not have a parade was Ronald Reagan for his second term, due to the cold temperatures.

It used to be that presidential inaugurations took place on March 4, the day the U.S. Constitution took effect in 1789. Then, in 1933, the 20th Amendment changed the inauguration date permanently to

Jan. 20. It will be held today because the public ceremony traditionally moves to Monday when Inauguration Day falls on Sunday. The president still is sworn in privately before noon on Jan. 20.

President Obama will be sworn in by the chief justice of the Supreme Court. He swears to uphold the principles in our Constitution and to defend our nation.

After he takes the oath, he will address the nation. Some of the speeches past presidents have made are very famous. In 1793, George Washington, at his second inauguration, gave the address that was the shortest in history, only 135 words. William Henry Harrison gave the longest address in 1841 -- it was 8,445 words. After the speech and parade, there will be parties and balls to celebrate.

(To learn more, visit inaugural.senate.gov.)


A new 'iCarly' video game

Have you ever seen the TV show "iCarly" on Nickelodeon? Have you ever wanted to play a game based on it? Now you can because the game "iCarly: Groovy Foodie!" (D3 Publisher) is out and it is so worth it. In this game, you play as Carly and you set a menu and start serving the customers. But you'd better be fast because if the customers leave, you lose! There are all sorts of levels of competition. I made it to level three because there were five people in all the lines and it takes about 13 seconds for the food to be ready. The smoothies take different times to make, and they give you different abilities, like extra muscle. There are different places where you can make and serve the food, and there are lots of different ways to earn bonuses.

-- KAVEESH GALANI/Kidsday Reporter

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