By Mac Cerullo
---- — AMESBURY – Mayor-elect Ken Gray and each of the other officials elected in November will be sworn into office during an inauguration ceremony on Jan. 2.
The inauguration is being held in the Amesbury High School auditorium starting at 7 p.m., and immediately following the ceremony a reception will be held in the school cafeteria. Peter Hoyt will serve as master of ceremonies, and lead organizer Rosemary Werner encouraged all residents to attend.
“We’re hoping everybody will come,” Werner said, adding that guests will have a chance to talk to the newly inaugurated officials during the reception.
The ceremony is expected to last about an hour and will be headlined by Gray’s inauguration address, which will be given at the conclusion of the ceremony. City Clerk Bonnijo Kitchin will swear in each of the officials, including all of those elected to the Housing Authority, Board of Library Trustees, Planning Board, School Committee and City Council before ending with the mayor.
The inauguration will also feature an Honor Guard from the Amesbury Police Department, and children from the Cashman Elementary School will perform several songs.
“I wanted to have the kids be part of it, and I thought it would be good for them,” Werner said. “They’re going to sing and I thought it would be nice to have kids from the different schools do something.”
Werner said a group of students from the Amesbury Middle School will lead the assembly in the Pledge of Allegiance, and Joan MacPherson, minister from the Main Street Congregational Church, will provide the invocation.
Gray said he is excited for the ceremony, adding that his transition has been going well and he is looking forward for the chance to assume office and hit the ground running.
“It’s very smooth,” Gray said. “It’s kind of a whirlwind, I’m meeting everyone and getting up to speed on things. I’m just excited to get going.”