By John Oliveira – 1/18/09

Sunday night, commuters
arriving at Washington D.C.’s Union Station
were greeted with station detours and ball gowns. That is because Union
Station helped kick off President-elect Barack Obama’s Inaugural
weekend with the Latino Inaugural Gala. Commuters would have to find a
different way out of the station besides the main entrance.  For this
star-studded event, the train station’s main hall was transformed into
a flashy and fancy ballroom. The exclusive black-tie event was
invite-only and featured some of the most prominent Hispanic
politicians and entertainers.

The event kicked off shortly
before 8 PM with “American Idol” runner-up
David Archuleta singing the national anthem. The concert theme
continued throughout the night with performances by Mexican singer
Paulina Rubio, Alejandro Sanz, and the night’s headliner, Marc Anthony,
who was introduced by his wife, superstar Jennifer Lopez. Other
celebrities and politicians who attended were Senator Ken Salazar
(D-Colorado), Representative Hilda Solis (D-California), Rosario
Dawson, and George Lopez. Even though the fiesta was thrown in honor of
the President-elect, Barack Obama did not make an appearance.