I've been to most of the Democratic Conventions since 1968, but never have I been as excited about going as I am this year. Maybe it's because Barack is a friend, or because his candidacy offers the historic change so necessary in this country, but this week in Denver will be a most memorable time.
Conventions are so much more than hearing speeches over four nights in a Convention Hall. The days offer opportunities to meet people from all walks of life who are true experts in their fields --- on everything from the environment, to healthcare, to foreign affairs, to the economy to judicial appointments. From breakfast to lunch, through the afternoon and pre-Convention hours, meetings, seminars, and question-and-answer sessions will be going on simultaneously all over town. Many events are planned as pre-Convention get-togethers, where networking opportunities abound over cocktails and hors d'oeuvres before heading off to the Convention floor.
As for the Convention itself, Monday is an evening devoted to Michelle Obama, hopefully our next first lady. It will offer an opportunity for the millions of viewers to get to know this bright and accomplished young lady, who is the rock in Barack's life.
Tuesday will offer supporters of Hillary Clinton an opportunity to get on their feet and show their appreciation for Hillary. Her speech will be one of the most anticipated at the convention. I wouldn't want to be former Gov. Mark Warner of Virginia, who is delivering the keynote address that same night. Competing with the Hillary buzz will not be an easy task.
Wednesday night will offer another evening of competing speeches. Traditionally, this is a night devoted to hearing from the Vice Presidential nominee and getting familiar with the number two person on the ticket. However, Wednesday night will also be Bill Clinton's "coming back" night, and hearing from our former President, in view of everything that transpired during the primary season, should fill the hall with great electricity. Clinton and Joe Biden are the two most verbose speakers in the Democratic Party, so we might need tickets for an extra session.
Finally, Thursday night will shift to Invesco Field at MIle High Stadium, where Barack will deliver his acceptance speech to what is anticipated to be the largest crowd ever for such an event. If Barack's speech four years ago in Boston was any indication, the throngs in attendance, and viewing across the nation and the world, will be mesmerized. It will certainly be the highlight of an exciting four days.
Following the formalities at the Convention itself, late night parties will be the order of the evening. Each state delegation will have its own nighttime event. Our Illinois delegation is staying at the Marriott Hotel and among the parties planned for Illinois are ones hosted by Senator Durbin and Congressman Rahm Emanuel, Mayor Daley, Speaker of the Illinois House Mike Madigan, and the Democratic Party of Illinois, among others.
There will be a very large contingent from Illinois who don't want to miss a chance to view history in the making. If you're one of them, let me and Huffington Post Chicago know. We want to hear your take on what's happening in Denver--and why it matters to everyone back in Chicago. Use the comments section below to let us know.
I'll be reporting back from Denver throughout the week. Use the comments section to ask me any questions you have--and whatever you want to know from inside the Convention. I'll be checking in, sending updates, and answering questions throughout the week.
For more Huffington Post coverage from the Democratic National Convention, visit our Politics @ the DNC page, our Democratic Convention Big News Page, and our HuffPost bloggers' Twitter feed, live from Denver.