WASHINGTON, D.C. — Even though the carpet wasn't red at Declare Yourself's "A New Birth of Citizenship" inaugural ball at the Renaissance Hotel on Sunday night, celebrities like [artist id="1784962"]John Legend[/artist], [artist id="1230385"]Maroon 5[/artist], [artist id="7590"]Jamie Foxx[/artist] and [movieperson id="231013"]Hayden Panettiere[/movieperson] came out to celebrate the youth vote.
The thrill of Barack Obama's victory resonated with guests, who shared with us their feelings of pride and a new sense of hope for the new administration. Some, like Jamie Foxx, shared their experience meeting the soon-to-be president. "He got to hear my Obama impression and I saw him laugh," said Foxx, who shared his "best Barack" with everyone on the whole carpet (after doing it for the whole country at the "We Are One" concert earlier on Sunday.)
Declare Yourself is a nonprofit campaign intended to encourage eligible young people to register and vote in the presidential primaries and election. According to the organization, 2.2 million young people either used its online registration tool or registered through its "Ultimate College Bowl" contest.
The evening was hosted by Jessica Alba and featured powerful performances from Maroon 5, John Legend, spoken word artists Steve Connell and Sekou (Tha Misfit), and Nuttin' But Stringz. The celebration, which highlighted the impact of young voters in the 2008 election, started off calmly but quickly turned into a Democratic partay!
DJ Samantha Ronson kept the party jumping while her girlfriend, Lindsay Lohan, played the texting turntables in the background. At one point in the evening, LiLo ran to accompany Ronson on the carpet so she wouldn't be left alone with the paparazzi.
King Anyi Howell is a regular contributor to Youth Radio/Youth Media International (YMI), a Peabody Award-winning youth-driven converged media production company that delivers the best youth news and culture and undiscovered talent to a cross section of audiences.
"Be the Change: Live From the Inaugural" will air live on MTV on Tuesday, January 20, at 10 p.m. ET/ 7 p.m. PT. MTV News will have wall-to-wall coverage of the event and of the scenes in Washington, D.C., New Orleans and Kenya in the days leading up to the event and in the days that follow.