Magazine article American Libraries

LC Celebrates Bicentennial with Concert and Legends Lunch

Magazine article American Libraries

LC Celebrates Bicentennial with Concert and Legends Lunch

Article excerpt

The Library of Congress celebrated its 200th birthday April 24 with a day-long party that included a concert on the Capitol lawn, a luncheon for American "living legends" hosted by Cokie Roberts, and a dinner for donors.

Thirty-four of the 84 legends selected by the library attended the lunch, including Big Bird (who wore a red-and-blue-striped tie), Gen. Colin Powell, physicians T. Berry Brazelton and Michael DeBakey, singers Pete Seeger and Bobby Short, cartoonist Al Hirschfeld, and feminist Gloria Steinem.

Yale University historian Jaroslav Pelikan spoke on behalf of the group, speculating that he was chosen as spokesperson because "I seem to be the only one among those present whose last name puts him into the same class with Big Bird," the Associated Press reported April 24 (honoree Larry Bird was unable to attend).

Seeger, Kathy Mattea, and Mickey Hart, as well as Latin, jazz, bluegrass, and other musicians, performed at the free public concert on the East Lawn of the Capitol. Big Bird and Maria from Sesame Street sang "Happy Birthday."

The donors dinner, held in the Madison Building's Great Hall, featured speeches by Senators Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) and Chris Dodd (D-Conn.), Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, Librarian of Congress James H. …

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