LANHAM, Md. (WUSA) --It should probably come as no surprise that Fred Strickland has been counting down the days until President Obama's second inaugural parade.
That's because Strickland and a few hundred of his colleagues will largely determine the parade's success.
Strickland is Executive Director of Hargrove, a family-owned company in Prince George's County that's been making floats for the past 17 inaugural parades, going all the way back to the Truman administration.
This year, the company was also named the general contractor for the Presidential Inaugural Committee, so, in addition to building 8 parade floats, Hargrove will also manage all the design and technical aspects of the official inaugural balls.
"They're exciting, they define the company every four years," Strickland said, referring to his company's work on the various inauguration events.
Incredibly, Hargrove was only awarded the contract for the inauguration in late December, so they'll only have about a month to complete the entire project. That's why they've now added about 70 part-time employees to their full-time staff of 250, and the entire operation is now running 24/7.
Tim McGill, Hargrove's Chief Executive Officer, says despite having worked on 7 inaugurations for the company, it never gets old.
"It is the most proud event we do," McGill said.