2013 - New York Post

Inauguration an Empire Statement

It may be a Washington inauguration, but it’s going to have a real New York flavor.

Because Sen. Charles Schumer is chairman of the inauguration committee putting on the event, the ceremony and following luncheon are filled with Empire State food, music and dignitaries.

Richard Olsen-Harbich is the wine maker for Bedell Cellars of Long Island, who are providing the 2009 merlot to be used at the luncheon.

“It means an incredible amount for the region as a whole,” said Olsen-Harbich. “And it shows that merlot is really cool again because the coolest guy on the planet will be drinking it.”

The PS 22 Chorus of Staten Island will follow the Marine Band with its musical selection at the ceremony, an unforgettable treat for the 65 fifth-graders, said chorus director Gregg Breinberg.

“It’s the big show indeed,” Breinberg said. “We’re anticipating one of the best events the chorus has ever been involved in. The kids are going to have a place in history.”

Derek Grout and his family at the Golden Harvest farm in Kinderhook shipped 120 pounds of apples from their operation to go into apple cobbler being served for dessert.

“I voted for Obama so it’s icing,” Grout said. “I’m thrilled.” Carol Cymbala will join in the excitement when she brings her army of 300 singers of the Grammy Award-winning Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir to perform at the ceremony.

“I never thought it would happen in my lifetime, and it’s here,” Cymbala said.

Luncheon participants will be serenaded for an hour by the Eastman String Quartet from the University of Rochester.