Mary McPartland and her 13-year-old son, Andrew Wilson, are exhilerated, albeit a little exhausted, from their action-packed weekend in Washington, D.C. to see President Barack Obama sworn in for his second term in office.
McPartland was one of 225 winners out of "tens of thousands" who entered a statewide lottery for tickets to the presidential inauguration ceremony.
Andrew was actually the one to convince his mother to enter the drawing. A Springs School eighth grader, he said on Tuesday that the experience far exceeded his expectations. "I've learned alot about our government in school. But to come to our US Capitol and see the President sworn in by the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, to see the whole Congress together, to hear Kelly Clarkson sing God Bless America, all surrounded by almost a million of your fellow citizens, that's a pretty amazing Bucket list!," he wrote in a joint email with his mother.
"We are pretty patriotic, so to hear Beyonce sing the National Anthem, with the flags waving and your president talking about 'We the People' in his inaugural speech ... Let's just say it was a great day to be an American!," McPartland said.
Security was tight, and the mother-son duo got there at 7 Monday morning to find their seats. "I can say I definitely felt a big part of being the future of our country. President Obama really spoke to all of us. We have to believe in the challenge to do good things for America," Andrew wrote.
"What more can a mom ask for?," McPartland said. "We toured the whole capitol, great weather, felt a part of all the action and living history. Thanks, Senator Schumer!"
McPartland and Wilson took part in a ceremony at Schumer's office in December to announce the winners.