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Tickets Available Tuesday for Obama Talk at Penn State

on January 31, 2011 10:19 PM

Penn State students and employees are invited to President Barack Obama's Rec Hall appearance this week, the university announced late Monday.

Obama, who had been scheduled to visit the University Park campus on Wednesday, now is expected to arrive on Thursday. Anticipated icy, snowy weather prompted the schedule shuffling.

The president is slated to begin speaking about 12:15 p.m. Thursday in Rec Hall, where his remarks will focus on clean energy and innovation, according to White House statements.

The White House reported Saturday that attendance at the Rec Hall event would be by invitation only. It didn't elaborate publicly until Monday evening.

Free tickets will be available to university students and employees on a first-come, first-served basis starting at noon Tuesday in Heritage Hall at the HUB-Robeson Center, according to Penn State. Each person seeking a ticket will need to present a valid Penn State ID, and ticket distribution will be limited to one per person.

Penn State did not report exactly how many tickets will be available. But a White House spokesman, in an e-mail message, said the amount is "significant."

All attendees will be asked to arrive at Rec Hall at 9 a.m. Thursday, Penn State noted, citing security protocol.

"No access will be allowed after 11 a.m.," a university statement reads. "Attendees are asked to limit personal items: no umbrellas, signs, banners, strollers, baby bags, drinks, containers or liquids will be permitted upon entry to Rec Hall on Thursday."

The Big Ten Network has made arrangements to broadcast Obama's remarks live. TV-viewing locations on campus will be set up in the South Gym in Rec Hall and at the HUB-Robeson Center, where large monitors will be in place, according to Penn State. Tickets won't be necessary at those venues.

At Rec Hall, "the majority of the president's (in-person) audience will be people who play a direct role in America's ability to win the future through investments in innovation and clean energy, ranging from Innovation Hub partners to Penn State engineering students and faculty," White House spokesman Matt Lehrich wrote in an e-mail message.

Obama's Rec Hall appearance will be just one element of his brief trip to University Park. He's also expected to tour Penn State labs that are focused on energy research.

The university is providing leadership for a Philadelphia-based Energy Innovation Hub, funded in large part by $122 million from the federal government.

Penn State has warned that Obama's University Park visit may cause delays for both pedestrians and vehicular traffic Thursday. Some traffic may be rerouted, and some buildings may be closed. For a short period, access to University Park Airport will be limited, according to the university.

StateCollege.com will post additional information as it becomes available.

Earlier coverage

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Exec: Obama's Penn State Visit Rescheduled; Tickets May Be Available
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