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Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Michael Jackson Memorial to Draw Huge Crowd


The larger than life memorial dedicated to the late Michael Jackson will feature performances by John Mayer, Jennifer Hudson, Mariah Carey, Usher, Lionel Richie, Smokey Robinson and Stevie Wonder. Appearances by Brooke Shields, Kobe Bryant and Rev. Al Sharpton are also expected.

The service is scheduled to take place at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, Calif.--the site where Jackson rehearsed for his ironically named “This Is It” Tour. Those who want to view the service can catch the ceremony on all major cable networks or view it streaming on websites like

Deborah Rowe, the mother of two of Jackson’s children, told the press that she would not be a part of the memorial because she did not want to be “an unnecessary distraction.”

Jackson’s family joined together for a more intimate, less press heavy memorial on Monday evening at the Forest Lawn Cemetery.

As for those attending the July 7 memorial, 8,750 fans from all over the world will join the service after 1.5 million of them entered a drawing to win a ticket for today’s event. The winners were informed on July 5.

To prevent scalping of the tickets, officials in charge of passing out the winnings gave each winner a wristband as they arrived at Dodger Stadium to claim their prize. The popular auction site, Ebay, helped out with the anti-scalping measures by announcing that they would remove any postings that offered Michael Jackson memorial tickets.

Officials are expecting a larger crowd than just those who have tickets to the event. Streets surrounding the Staples Center were shut down late Monday evening, and Los Angeles Mayor Jan Perry told TIME Magazine that those without tickets shouldn’t bother coming out because, "There will not be anything to see. This is a private event on private property."

- Jessica Cole

Currently Listening to: “Smooth Criminal” by Michael Jackson

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