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“All I want is a carrot cake for breakfast, and Obama.” So says Xpress staffer Aiyanna Sezak-Blatt, whose birthday happens to be Jan. 20—Inauguration Day. If you want to celebrate a new president and the change many hope he’ll bring, head over to the Inauguration Gala at the Orange Peel on Tuesday.

Check out www.ashevillestreetstyle.com

President-elect Barack Obama‘s swearing-in and speech will be shown on giant television screens. There’ll be food from Asheville’s independent restaurants, beer specials and music from Josh Phillips Folk Festival and Jonathan Scales Fourchestra. The festivities begin at 7 p.m. and cost is $7 (free for children younger than 12). All proceeds go to Big Brothers Big Sisters, Project Share (the Buncombe County heating assistance program) and Mountain Housing Opportunities. Festive attire is encouraged.

Other celebrations include the Madison County Inaugural Ball at the Marshall High School Auditorium. Again, wear your festive outfits and come celebrate with friends and neighbors. The ceremonies will be shown on a big-screen TV, and there will be a cash bar, live music and light refreshments. Tickets are available at Zuma Coffee and Penlands Department Store for $5. For more info, call 649-2332.

And the Asheville Pizza and Brewing Company will show the Inauguration events on its patio at the Cox Avenue location, as well as the game room at the Merrimon spot.

One day later, blues outfit the Lowdown Travelers will play at BoBo Gallery, and the show will feature a presidential cakewalk to celebrate the first day of Obama’s presidency. “The couple that best promenades in a dignified manner, high stepping and kicking in high society style takes the cake,” the band’s frontman explains.

For most of the Inauguration events, festive or patriotic attire is recommended. What that means, exactly, is up to you. Uncle Sam hats? Red, white and blue ponchos? Draping yourself in an American flag? Is that legal? On the fashion front, Xpress may not be able to pick your perfect patriotic outfit, but if you want to see what’s on the street, style-wise, check out our new blog: www.ashevillestreetstyle.com.

The site debuted last week as an online photographic record of the unique fashion to be found in our fair city, says its creator and Xpress‘s resident fashionista Alli Marshall.

“Asheville Street Style harkens back to former Xpress print column ‘Top Drawer,’ but with a streamlined approach and an emphasis on the found, DIY, avant-garde and original styles seen on the streets,” Marshall notes.

How often do you get a chance to experience silent music? For that matter, what is silent music? Silence to some people could be a cacophony of loud breathing, chair squeaking and heater humming; to others, just boredom. Do you find music in it?

On Saturday, the Charleston-based Fold’s Ensemble will present an evening of silent music at the Phil Mechanic Building’s Flood Gallery, as part of Flood’s sporadic Sonic Experience series. The evening begins with Black Mountain College alum John Cage‘s “4’33’” and traces so-called “new music” through the 20th century. It’s $10.

For your traditional music fix of the week, catch the Steep Canyon Rangers when they return home to the Orange Peel on Friday night. Asheville’s favorite wayward bluegrass boys will take the stage with the atomic Larry Keel. Yeehoo!

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