Two families took centre stage as the US Democratic party gathered in Denver at a national convention that will endorse the man who could become the first black president of the United States: the Kennedys and the Obamas.
Though Barack Obama himself was absent, his wife Michelle gave a confident speech urging Americans to entrust him with the keys to the White House. The couple's two young daughters, Sasha and Malia, then joined their mother on stage as Mr Obama spoke by satellite video link-up from the campaign trail in Missouri.
Earlier, Senator Edward Kennedy, who is receiving treatment for brain cancer, had made a stirring appearance to throw his weight behind the Illinois politician.
To thunderous applause the Democrat party grandee told the assembled crowd: "Nothing, nothing was going to keep me away tonight". He finished his speech with the words: "The dream lives on".
On Thursday Senator Obama will formally accept his party's nomination during an address preceded by the singing of the national anthem by Sex And The City actress Jennifer Hudson.