With a 3-year-old son, Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. and his wife, Kendel, know that life in the governor's mansion is not going to be all politics. Pizza, popcorn and parties have to be on the agenda, as will be teaching children about democracy. Thus, the Ehrlichs, joined by his running mate, Michael S. Steele, and Steele's wife, Andrea, hosted about 460 kids and their parents Saturday at a children's inaugural party at Howard Community College in Columbia. The event began five days of celebration welcoming Maryland's first Republican governor in 34 years.

Dylan Fox, 4, and his sister Delaney, 6, are among the hundreds of youngsters who attended a children's inaugural party at Howard Community College on Saturday.Drew Ehrlich, 3, is bashful in front of an audience at Howard Community College as he sits on his father's lap while his mother, Kendel Ehrlich, watches.Ehrlich, above, erupts into laughter after receiving a teddy bear as a gift. At left, Ehrlich greets the crowd during the kids' party with his running mate, Michael S. Steele, center, and Steele's wife, Andrea, at his side. Ehrlich was sworn in yesterday as Maryland's governor and Steel as lieutenant governor.