The White House is expected to hold a grand opening party on Thursday, and the public will be invited to participate, a senior administration official told CBS News on Tuesday.
The event will be held at the White House complex in the nation’s capital, according to the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss internal plans.
The official added that the event is still early in the planning stages, but will be a “first-of-its-kind” celebration that will feature a concert, live music, games, and more.
“It will be very much a celebration of the United States of America,” the official said.
“We’ve got a lot of things that are happening and we want to make sure everyone has a great time and a great experience.”
The official declined to provide any details on what exactly the grand opening will entail, but noted that it will include a public viewing of the inauguration and a celebration by the President and Vice President.
“In terms of the ceremony itself, we’re not going to announce anything right now, but we are going to invite the public to participate,” the source said.
The White Houses staff has been working with the local community to plan the event, the official added.
“And the whole goal is that it be a great event for the people of the capital to see,” the White Houses official said, referring to the event that has become a signature event for Obama.
White House officials have been working to make the event a success, the White houses official said on Tuesday, adding that the team has already made improvements to the White house to make it more accessible to the public.
The Washington Post reported that the project will include upgrades to the grounds of the White Commons, including installing additional walkways, landscaping, and other improvements to ensure that it can accommodate more visitors, and to increase security.
The Post also reported that construction on the Whitehouse has been delayed by several years, but the project is expected “to be completed by the end of the year.”
White House spokesman Brian Fallon has told reporters that the WhiteHouse is currently working on plans to make improvements to access to the complex, and that it is “committed to making it a great place for the president and his team to be and for the public.”
Fallon also said that the new building will have “enhanced security” to ensure people can easily get to the ceremony.
“The White House was built on a foundation of safety,” Fallon said.
He added that construction will “be done in an open and transparent manner, and there will be no hidden or unsecured entrances.”