WASHINGTON — A star-studded gathering of dignitaries, business leaders and entertainers are converging on the White House this evening for the lavish state dinner being held in honour of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
Trudeau’s visit marks the 11th state or official visit of Barack Obama’s presidency but the first for a Canadian in 19 years.
Obama and his wife, Michelle, will host the prime minister and his wife, Sophie Gregoire-Trudeau at the black tie gala.
Trudeau’s mother, Margaret, and his in-laws are among the invited guests.
The event is slated to include attendees from the political and business arenas, along notable homegrown names from the world of entertainment.
Canadian actors Michael J. Fox, Ryan Reynolds, Sandra Oh and comedian Mike Myers are slated to attend, as is Reynolds’s wife, American actress Blake Lively, and Canadian “Saturday Night Live” executive producer Lorne Michaels.
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, retired NBA star Grant Hill and his Canadian singer-songwriter wife, Tamia Hill, are also scheduled to attend.
A host of senior Obama administration officials and advisers, U.S. and Canadian ambassadors, U.S. state senators and Canadian cabinet ministers will be joined by philanthropists and CEOs from companies including Xerox, United Parcel Service and global security and aerospace company Lockheed Martin.
The first course of the glitzy dinner will see attendees dine on Alaskan halibut “casseroles” with cepes, delicate angel hair asparagus, chanterelles, baby onions, and lardon and herbed butter; followed by roasted apricot galette with Appalachian cheese, heirloom lettuces and pine nut crisps.
The menu features ingredients from the Pacific Northwest to the Atlantic coast, and a nod to Canada with duck poutine among the canapes set to be served.
The vegetables for the first course come from a farm in Ohio and the herbed butter is sourced from Michelle Obama’s White House kitchen garden.
The main course consists of a herb-crusted lamb from Colorado, Yukon Gold potato dauphinoise and lightly sauteed spring vegetables.
Dessert continues the spring theme as the chefs plan to serve a maple pecan cake with cocoa nib wafer and butterscotch swirl ice cream. The pecans in the cake are Texan and the maple syrup comes from New England.
There will also be a handmade sugar sculpture called “A View from the Mountain Top.” The menu says it is “inspired by the splendour of the Rocky Mountains, which extend from New Mexico to Canada.”
Pastries are also slated to feature “American and Canadian influences.”
The state dinner will be held in the East Room of the White House, and will be followed by a performance by American singer-songwriter Sara Bareilles.
Here’s a list of ‘expected attendees’ to tonight’s Canada state dinner in Washington:
U.S. President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Sophie Gregoire-Trudeau
Naomi Aberly, philanthropist, Larry Lebowitz
David Abney, chairman and CEO, United Parcel Service, Sherry Abney
Adewale Adeyemo, deputy assistant to the president, Heather Wong
Michael Alter, president, The Alter Group, Ellen Alter
Robert Anderson, author, Eric Harland
Economic Development Minister Navdeep Bains
Sara Bareilles, singer, Jennifer Bareilles
Bruce Bastian, co-founder, WordPerfect Corp., Clinton Ford
Gary Bettman, commissioner, National Hockey League, William Daly III
International Development Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau
Tony Blinken, deputy U.S. secretary of state, Evan Ryan
Angela Bogdan, chief of protocol of Canada
Jeremy Broadhurst, principal secretary to the prime minister
Stephen Bronfman, Canadian business representative, philanthropist
Ursula Burns, chairman and CEO, Xerox Corp., Lloyd Bean
Gerald Butts, principal secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office
Kristie Canegallo, assistant to the president, Simi Shah
Defence Secretary Ashton Carter, Cynthia DeFelice
Maine Sen. Susan Collins, Peter Vigue
Audie Cornish-Emery, National Public Radio, Theodore Emery
California Rep. Susan Davis, Steven J. Davis
Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton
Anita Decker Breckenridge, assistant to the president, Russell Breckenridge
Brian Deese, assistant to the president, Kara Deese
Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion
Karen Dixon, executive committee member, Lambda Legal, Nan Schaffer
Juliet Eilperin, The Washington Post, Andrew Light
Adam Entous, The Wall Street Journal, Sandra Medina
Mark Feierstein, senior director for Western Hemisphere affairs, National Security Council, Tiffany Stone
Michael J. Fox, actor, Tracy Pollan
International Trade Minister Chrystia Freeland
Michael Froman, United States trade representative, Nancy Goodman
Anna Gainey, president of the Liberal party of Canada
Mark Gallogly, co-founder and managing principal, Centerbridge Partners, Elizabeth Strickler
Suzy George, executive secretary and chief of staff of the National Security Council, Devon George-Eghdami
Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale
Jean Gregoire and Estelle Blais, parents of Sophie Gregoire-Trudeau
Avril Haines, assistant to the president, David Davighi
John Hannaford, foreign and defence policy adviser to the prime minister
Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch, president pro tempore of the U.S. Senate, Wendy Hatch
Marillyn Hewson, chairman, president and CEO Lockheed Martin, James Hewson
Bruce Heyman, U.S. ambassador to Canada, Vicki Heyman
Grant Hill, member of The President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition, Tamia Hill
Irwin Jacobs, co-founder, Qualcomm and chair of the board of trustees, Salk Institute, Joan Jacobs
Roberta Jacobson, assistant U.S. secretary of state for Western Hemisphere affair, Jonathan Jacobson
Valerie Jarrett, senior adviser to the president, Anthony Balkissoon
Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, Susan DiMarco
Heritage Minister Melanie Joly,
Wayne Jordan, founder and principal, Jordan Real Estate Investments, Quinn Delaney
Jonathan Kaplan, founder and CEO The Melt, Marci Glazer
Washington Rep. Derek Kilmer, Jennifer Kilmer
Maine Sen. Angus King, Kathryn Rand
Robert Klein II, president, Klein Financial Corp., Robert Klein III
Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar, John Bessler
Vermont Sen. Patrick Leahy, Marcelle Leahy
Twila Legare, letter writer, Marc Legare
Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew
Charles Lewis, chairman, Lewis-Sebring Family Foundation, Penny Sebring
Andrew Liveris, chairman and CEO Dow Chemical Co., Paula Liveris
Alexander Macgillivray, deputy chief technology officer, the White House, Shona Crabtree
David MacNaughton, Canadian ambassador to the United States, Leslie Noble
Denis McDonough, White House chief of staff, Karin McDonough
Environment Minister Catherine McKenna
Lorne Michaels, executive producer, Saturday Night Live, Alice Michaels
Lisa Monaco, assistant to the president, Mark Monaco
Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, Katya Frois-Moniz
Dennis Muilenburg, chairman, president and CEO, Boeing Co., Gregory Smith
Shailagh Murray, assistant to the president, Neil King
Mike Myers, actor, Kelly Myers
Marvin Nicholson, special assistant to the president, Helen Pajcic
Konrad Ng, executive director, Shangri La, Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art, Maya Soetoro-Ng
Sandra Oh, actress, Lev Rukhin
John Owens, chairman of the board, MediGuide International, Missy Owens
California Rep. Nancy Pelosi, Democratic leader of the House of Representatives. Paul Pelosi
Amy Pope, deputy assistant to the president, Neil Allison
Samantha Power, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Cass Sunstein
Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker, John Poorman
Thomas Pritzker, chairman and CEO, The Pritzker Organization, Margot Pritzker
Kate Purchase, director of communications, the Prime Minister’s Office
Roberta Rampton, Reuters, Peter Rampton
Ryan Reynolds, actor, Blake Lively
Ben Rhodes, assistant to the president, Ann Norris
Steven Ricchetti, chief of staff to the vice-president, Amy Ricchetti
National Security Adviser Susan Rice, Ian Cameron
Martine Rothblatt, chairman and co-CEO, United Therapeutics Corp., Bina Rothblatt
Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan
Peter Selfridge, chief of protocol, U.S. State Department, Parita Shah Selfridge
New Hampshire Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, William Shaheen
Beth Shaw, member of the President’s Advisory Council on Financial Capability for Young Americans, Adam Shaw
Adam Silver, commissioner, National Basketball Association, Maggie Grise
Ian Simmons, co-founder and principal, Blue Haven Initiative, Liesel Simmons
Todd Stern, special envoy for climate change, Jennifer Klein
Michele Taylor, member, United States Holocaust Memorial Council, Kenneth Taylor
Tina Tchen, chief of Staff to the First Lady
Katie Telford, chief of staff, Prime Minister’s Office.
Montana Sen. Jon Tester, Sharla Tester
Fisheries Minister Hunter Tootoo
Margaret Trudeau, mother of the prime minister
Michael Wernick, clerk of the Privy Council
Melissa Winter, deputy assistant to the president
David Zaslav, president and CEO, Discovery Communications, Pam Zaslav