Crowd gathers to catch glimpse of first lady in Ballantyne

by: Andrew Doud Updated:


CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Part of Ballantyne is blocked off by heavy security Thursday.

The president and the first lady are staying at the Ballantyne Hotel and Lodge.

Michelle Obama drew a crowd in Ballantyne when she left the hotel Thursday morning for some speaking engagements in uptown.

People showed up and stood with Channel 9 reporter Andrew Doud and waited for police to block off the intersection of Ballantyne Commons Parkway and Johnston Road.

Around 9:45 a.m., a caravan of motorcycles, highway patrol cars, black SUVs and white vans made a right turn on Johnston Road and headed toward Interstate 485.

Although, Channel 9 can’t confirm it was the first lady’s motorcade, it makes sense considering she was scheduled to appear at the Convention Center at 10:15 a.m.

Channel 9 spoke to Vaneta Smiley who came by Wednesday night and again Thursday morning just to try and catch a glimpse of the Obama’s.

Wednesday, police blocked off Johnston Road for 30 minutes before the president even got into the area.

Drivers were delayed 10 to 15 minutes Thursday morning.