SPRINGFIELD — Theresa Coleman knows how difficult paying for higher education can be.
The northern Illinois resident has a daughter in her fourth year of medical school, and the cost can be "staggering."
This is why she is especially happy higher education was one of the many topics talked about by Gov. J.B Pritzker during his campaign.
"I'm so excited," she said. "I think he's going to be great for Illinois."
Coleman's hopes for the next four years mirrored many of those at Monday night's Governor's Inauguration Celebration, held at a thoroughly decked-out Exposition Building on the Illinois State Fairgrounds.
A large crowd of Pritzker supporters and others mingled, took selfies and danced to various bands, including a surprise appearance from Maroon 5, an internationally known, three-time Grammy Award-winning band usually seen playing large arenas and stadiums.
In fact, just a day earlier, the NFL announced Maroon 5, fronted by Adam Levine, will be the main act of the Super Bowl halftime show on Feb. 3. But there they were on the stage in the Expo Building Monday night, playing hits such as "Payphone," "One More Night," "Sunday Morning" and "Harder to Breathe."
Speculation over the identity of Monday's headlining act circulated around town all day. Inauguration officials remained tight-lipped about who it was.
Just before Maroon 5 came out, the new governor and his wife, M.K. Pritzker, came out on stage for their first dance as the first couple. They danced to “How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You)."
Among the crowd, Jim Allen, president of the Bricklayers District Council of Illinois, said he was excited about the new leadership. He was especially excited to see what Pritzker does with construction, roads and bridges.
"I'm looking forward to the next four years," he said.
Derek Jones, chair of the Rock Island County Democrats, said he thinks Pritzker "is a guy that is going to be willing to reach across aisles to get things done."
Jones said Pritzker has shown he is able to meet and work with Republicans.
"We're all in this together," Jones said.
Rep. Tim Butler, R-Springfield, also attended the Inaugural Celebration. He said it was important to attend as a representative of Springfield to show the governor "we're here to support him."
"These events are non-partisan," Butler said. "I think it's a great day for the people of Illinois anytime we see a big celebration like this."
Though Butler said he has had "several good conversations" with the governor, he hasn't sat down with him yet.
"I look forward to sitting down with him and telling him what's important to this area of the state," he said.
Tickets for Monday's event at the Expo Building sold for $250. The new governor himself paid for the costs of the celebration and other inauguration events. Proceeds from the ticket sales and other donations go toward the Illinois Fairgrounds Foundation and Cabrini Green Legal Aid.
The Fairgrounds Foundation raises money to make repairs and other improvements at the state's two fairgrounds, including Springfield's. Cabrini Green Legal Aid in Chicago supports “low income individuals negatively impacted by the criminal justice system,” the inaugural committee said.