“I thought it was a once-in-a-lifetime thing, to see the inauguration and get to do all of these side things.” Bryce Teater, who will attend Barack Obama’s inauguration Monday (Staff photo by Ken Ritchie)
“I thought it was a once-in-a-lifetime thing, to see the inauguration and get to do all of these side things.” Bryce Teater, who will attend Barack Obama’s inauguration Monday (Staff photo by Ken Ritchie)
Bryce Teater remembers visiting Washington, D.C., about five years ago and touring the White House.

Like most people who visit the presidential mansion, the 13-year-old Madison resident never caught a glimpse of the commander-in-chief.

That will change next week.

When President Barack Obama places his hand on the Bible on Monday and pledges an oath to the American people for the next four years, Teater will be one of the thousands of people in attendance.

Teater, the son of Brian and Amy Teater, will travel to Washington as a student ambassador with the organization People to People, which provides educational global travel for the nation's youth.

Teater was nominated by a teacher for the leadership program last year. He requested Washington, D.C., and the inauguration as one of his top trips. He will leave for Washington on Friday and return Tuesday.

"I thought it was a once-in-a-lifetime thing, to see the inauguration and get to do all of these side things," said Teater, who attends Madison Junior High School.

The leadership summit will allow Teater and a number of other students from around the world to witness the inauguration, visit the Smithsonian National Museum of American History and explore the monuments in the capital. The group also will attend discussion forums and hear speakers with a knowledge of the presidency, including White House correspondent Ken Walsh; President Dwight D. Eisenhower's granddaughter Mary Jean Eisenhower; and former White House chief of staff Kenneth Duberstein.

Monday's ceremony will mark the 57th presidential inauguration ceremony in the U.S. In 2009, a record 1.8 million visitors filled the National Mall to watch Obama sworn-in as the nation's 44th president.

Among the other activities, Teater's group will host an inaugural ball, which is billed to have a "special guest." That could be the president himself, world dignitary or other political player.

But Teater also has his own theory.

"I thought it could be the president, vice president or first lady," he said. "But because it's going to be kids mostly around my age, I thought it might end up being the president's daughters."

Whatever the case, Teater will be ready with his camera and a list of souvenirs for his family and friends back home.