Entries in First Family (3)


The First Family Goes to Church

Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Holding hands and smiling despite the 37 degree temperatures, President Obama and his family walked across the street from the White House to St. John’s Episcopal Church Sunday to attend the 11 a.m. service.

Malia wore maroon tights and a pink coat, while Sasha wore purple tights and a black coat. Both girls held their parents’ hands as they crossed Lafayette Park. Malia and her father chatted for much of the walk to St. John’s.

According to pool reports, the Rev. Dr. Luis Leon discussed Obama in his sermon. He told the congregation that Americans thought Obama would be a Messiah and change would be immediate.

“People have a tendency to create idols. Society must wait without idols,” he said.

While the Obamas have not claimed a church as their own since moving to Washington in 2009, the family has attended several different churches, including, on Easter Sunday this year, Shiloh Baptist Church.

St. John’s Church was founded in 1815 and, since James Madison, every presidents has attended at least one service there.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


President Obama Attends the Army-Navy Football Game

Pete Souza/Official White House Photo(LANDOVER, Md.) -- President Obama and Vice President Biden ventured to the home of the Washington Redskins – FedEx Field, for the 112th Army-Navy game Saturday afternoon. It was the first Army-Navy game Obama has attended as Commander-In-Chief.

The president led the coin toss, which Army won by calling “tails.” Saturday’s coin was a commemorative Ronald Reagan Centennial coin, celebrating the life of President Ronald Reagan. Vice President Biden, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey also joined the president on the field. While still in the first quarter, Obama visited the press box to talk about some players on the competing teams who come from his home state of Hawaii.

“I’ve got to be very careful,” Obama said about rooting for a particular team.

He began the game seated with cadets from the Naval Academy and, as is tradition, Obama walked across the field at half-time to sit on the Army side of the field. The President posed with Army cheerleaders before taking his seat. The Naval Academy Midshipmen lead West Point’s Black Knights in the overall series with a 55-49-7 record, including nine wins in a row. Both teams came into Saturday’s game with losing records hoping to end extended losing streaks. Navy has not won a game since it played Air Force in October, losing six straight games. Army has lost its last three games.

This visit to the Army-Navy game comes as President Obama prepares for the end of the War in Iraq. This week, the President will meet with Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Malaki on Monday and he and the First Lady will travel to Fort Bragg, N.C., where they will address troops returning from Iraq on Wednesday.

Ever the sports fan, President Obama and the First Family attended the Towson University-Oregon State University Men’s basketball game in Towson, Md., two weeks ago. Michelle Obama’s brother, Craig Robinson, coaches the OSU Beavers. The OSU Thanksgiving weekend game has become a bit of a tradition for the Obamas—in 2009, they watched the Beavers defeat the George Washington University Colonials 64-57 and in 2010, the Howard University Bison, 84-74. Happily for the Obama family, Oregon State won over Towson 66-46.

The Navy Midshipmen defeated the Army Black Knights 27-21 on Saturday.

“It was a great game,” Obama said as he entered the White House Saturday evening.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


First Family Visits Vineyard Main Street, Bookstore

CJ Gunther-Pool/Getty Images(VINEYARD HAVEN, Mass.) -- On the first full day of his Martha’s Vineyard vacation,  the president made his first public appearance at a well-known bookstore, “A Bunch of Grapes,” in the nearby town of Vineyard Haven.

Just after noon, rumors started swirling that he might be coming.  Within minutes, mysterious men with yellow police tape appeared on Main Street, where most of the town's business are located. They blocked off access to the bookstore’s entrance. Shortly thereafter, the presidential motorcade made its way down the narrow street to the delight of the crowds that had gathered.

Dressed in a casual short sleeved blue shirt, the president emerged with his girls, Sasha and Malia. The crowds began to cheer and scream.  Washington, D.C., resident Virlynn Adkinson, who just this morning arrived for a week’s vacation with several friends, was thrilled to get a chance to see the president in person for the first time. She scoffed at the suggestion the island is known for attracting mostly the rich and famous.

“I think there’s a perception it’s posh,” Adkinson said. “I think a lot of your middle class, average folks come here for vacation.”

As for those critics who think the president should stay at the White House working on the country’s economic problems, Adkinson wasn’t buying that. “He’s working all the time. He’s doing a little relaxing when he’s with his two girls, but for the most part he’s working. There’s too much going on in the country.”

When the president emerged from the store with his girls some 15 minutes later, he chatted and shook hands with a line of pre-selected, lucky folks who were chosen from the crowds to greet him. Many of them chanted, “Four more years! Four more years!” And then, just like that, he was gone.

Unfortunately, Adkinson and her friends weren’t as lucky but just getting to see him in person was enough. Laughing and giving her friends five, she said, “It was wonderful. It was fabulous.”

Asked if this made her vacation, she replied emphatically, “Yes!”

A Bunch of Grapes has been around for over 40 years. The family also visited there last year.  The White House press corps, coincidentally, is staying about one block away from the bookstore but that didn’t seem to deter Mr. Obama from making the trip.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio