The inauguration of the president of the United States is the ceremony of the president-elect and vice-president-elect swearing into office as president and vice-president of the United States. On the day of inauguration, at noon, the new four-year terms of office of the president and vice-president officially begin.
Inauguration Day occurs on January 20 (or 21st if the 20th is a Sunday) once every four years. The ceremony, organized by the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies, is held at the U.S. Capitol. Depending on the weather, it is held outside or inside of the Capitol building.
Usually the vice-president is sworn in first and the president at exactly 12:00 noon. Around or after 12 noon, the president takes the oath of office, usually administered by the Chief Justice of the United States. There is no requirement that any book, or in particular a book of sacred text, be used to administer the oath, and none is mentioned in the Constitution. But the Bible is being generally used for oaths. At least several presidents were sworn in on the George Washington Inaugural Bible. In 2013 Obama used a Bible that belonged to Martin Luther King, Jr.
After being sworn-in, new president usually delivers the inaugural address to the nation. Then the president and vice-president are given four ruffles and flourishes. The ruffles are played on drums and the flourishes on bugles, which are simple brass instruments with no valves. The ruffles and flourishes form a fanfare before performance of the president’s anthem, "Hail to the Chief", and the vice-president’s anthem, "Hail, Columbia". There is then a 21-gun salute from the howitzers of the military district of Washington. The U.S. military have participated in Inauguration Day ceremonies since George Washington’s, because the president is commander-in-chief of the armed forces.
Since 1953, the president and vice president have been guests of honor at a luncheon held by the leadership of the United States Congress immediately following the inaugural ceremony. The luncheon, organized by the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies, is held in Statuary Hall. The leadership of both houses of Congress as well as guests of the president and vice president are invited to the luncheon.
It has also become a tradition for the president to parade down Pennsylvania Avenue from the Capitol to the White House.
Following the arrival of the presidential entourage to the White House, it is customary for the president, vice-president, their families and leading members of the government and military to review an Inaugural Parade from an enclosed stand in front of the White House. The parade, which proceeds along the 1.5 miles of Pennsylvania Avenue in front of the stand, features both military and civilian participants from all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The largest, longest and most elaborate ever staged Parade was in 1953.
Beginning with George Washington, there has been a traditional production of a presidential Inauguration medal.
The national prayer service on the day after the inauguration, tradition dating back to George Washington, has been held at the Washington National Cathedral.
Inauguration Day is a federal holiday observed by only the federal employees working in the District of Columbia; Montgomery and Prince George’s Counties in Maryland; Arlington and Fairfax Counties in Virginia, and the cities of Alexandria and Fairfax in Virginia, and who are regularly scheduled to perform non-overtime work on Inauguration Day. There is no in-lieu-of holiday for employees and students who are not regularly scheduled to work or attend school on Inauguration Day. The primary reason for the holiday is to relieve traffic congestion that occurs during this major event.
In 2017 Inauguration Day in the United States in USA falls on January 20.