Daily Archives: June 2, 2010

President Obama and First Lady Michelle Honor Sir Paul McCartney at White House

Posted by: Audiegrl

Written by Kori Schulman

Sir Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder perform Ebony and Ivory at a concert honoring McCartney, recipient of the Gershwin prize, in the East Room of the White House. June 2, 2010. (Official White House Photo by Samantha Appleton)


Last night, President Obama presented America’s highest award for popular music − the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song − to Sir Paul McCartney in the East Room of the White House.

Artists from all genres and backgrounds joined the President and First Lady to honor Sir Paul McCartney, including Stevie Wonder, the Jonas Brothers, Faith Hill, Emmylou Harris, Lang Lang, Herbie Hancock, Elvis Costello, Jack White, Corinne Bailey Rae, David Grohl, and Jerry Seinfeld. As they gathered to present the annual award for extraordinary contributions to American music and culture, in his remarks, the President took a moment to address the challenges Americans face and the value of music in tough times:

We’ve gone through a difficult year and a half, and right now our thoughts and our prayers are with friends in another part of the country that is so rich in musical heritage — the people of the Gulf Coast who are dealing with something that we simply had not seen before. And it’s heartbreaking. And we reaffirm, I think together, our commitment to see to it that their lives and their communities are made whole again.

But part of what gets us through tough times is music, the arts, the ability to capture that essential kernel of ourselves, that part of us that sings even when times are hard. And it’s fitting that the Library has chosen to present this year’s Gershwin Prize for Popular Song to a man whose father played Gershwin compositions for him on the piano; a man who grew up to become the most successful songwriter in history -– Sir Paul McCartney.

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The concert will be broadcast on PBS stations nationwide on Wednesday, July 28, 2010 at 8:00 PM EDT as “In Performance at the White House Celebrating the Music of Paul McCartney: The Library of Congress Gershwin Prize.”

Corinne Bailey Rae performs at a concert honoring Paul McCartney, recipient of the Gershwin prize, in the East Room of the White House. June 2, 2010. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Last year, the President presented Stevie Wonder with the 2nd Annual Library of Congress Gershwin Prize. The prize commemorates George and Ira Gershwin, the legendary American songwriting team whose extensive manuscript collections reside in the Library of Congress. The prize is awarded to musicians whose lifetime contributions in the field of popular song exemplify the standard of excellence associated with the Gershwins.

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Looking for more stories on the First Lady? Check out our brand new section: FLOTUS: All Things Michelle Obama

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Filed under First Daughters, First Lady Michelle Obama, Music, Pop Culture, Pres. Barack Obama, Video/YouTube

Vice-President Joe Biden and Dr. Jill Biden Attend the Sesame Workshop’s 8th Annual Benefit Gala

Posted by: Audiegrl

Vice President Joe Biden and Dr. Jill Biden attend Sesame Workshop's 8th Annual Benefit Gala at Cipriani 42nd Street on June 2, 2010 in New York City. (Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images North America)

The muppets weren’t the only ones at last night’s Sesame Workshop’s 8th Annual Benefit Gala–the Bidens found their way to the fete, too! Jill and Joe conversed with some of our favorite furry friends. Both were dressed properly for the occasion–Jill in Grover blue dress and Joe in a tie tinted Rosita cyan. 😉

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Filed under Children, Dr. Jill Biden, Pop Culture, TV Shows, Vice-President Joe Biden

Let’s Move Outside! with First Lady Michelle Obama at Red Rock Canyon

Posted by: Audiegrl
Written by Assistant Secretary Rhea Suh

Junior rangers Isabella Davis and Paige Owens (L), and First Lady Michelle Obama and Sen. Harry Reid, (D-NV) participate in a mountain stretch during an event to help launch Obama's Let's Move Outside! initiative to promote more outdoor activity for children June 1, 2010 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Let's Move Outside! is a part of the first lady's Let's Move! initiative aimed at solving the problem of childhood obesity. (Photo by Pool/Getty Images North America)

Yesterday, I was fortunate to join First Lady Michelle Obama, Representative Dina Titus and Senator Harry Reid at the launch of Let’s Move Outside! in the spectacular Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area of Southern Nevada. The Canyon is just a short drive from the bustle of the Las Vegas Strip; this 197,000 acre property takes you to another time and with its solitude, wide open vistas and soaring red sandstone cliffs. Red Rock Canyon is one of only sixteen National Landscape Conservation Areas in the country, managed by the Bureau of Land Management.

This amazing backdrop was the perfect setting for the First Lady’s to announce a new component of her Let’s Move! campaign — Let’s Move Outside! As the first lady said in her remarks:

Our overall goal for “Let’s Move Outside” is to really get our kids active so that they make it a habit of moving around and seeing the activity they need not as a chore but as a fun way to explore our country and to do some things they haven’t done.

Doctors, teachers, and other professionals  agree that outdoor activity is one of the easiest and most fun ways to get – and stay – fit. And boy, did we have fun!

Twenty energetic kids from nearby elementary schools joined us for the afternoon’s activities. The First Lady and Senator Reid led the group in a series of geology stretches. Then, we all hiked over to a sandstone slope, where we watched some able rangers guide kids on a “rock scramble.” Even though it was a steep climb, the pay-off at the top was terrific — a panoramic view of the canyon as far as the eye could see. Finally, children were sworn in by First Lady Michelle Obama as official Let’s Move Outside! Junior Rangers, capping off an afternoon of adventure, exercise, and good cheer.

There are no better places for America’s children to get moving than in the parks, trails, and waters in all of our communities. Whether you are walking, hiking, swimming, horseback riding, or mountain biking –America’s public lands have a wide range of affordable activities and adventures for every family. These lands are America’s backyard—they are owned by everyone in this country and provide opportunities to get outside in every state, county, and city in the country.

The Department of Interior and the U.S. Forest Service will be hosting Let’s Move Outside! events across the country during the summer months. We will engage partners across the public and private sectors to expand access to these places and connect American families to our great big collective backyard. Check out the Let’s Move! website to find opportunities to get outside and have fun today!

Rhea Suh is Department of the Interior Assistant Secretary for Policy, Management & Budget

Full Remarks by the First Lady at “Let’s Move Outside” event with Senator Harry Reid

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Looking for more stories on the First Lady? Check out our brand new section: FLOTUS: All Things Michelle Obama

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Filed under (Senate Majority Leader) Harry Reid, Childhood Obesity, First Lady Michelle Obama, Nevada, Uncategorized