MERLE HAGGARD: KENNEDY CENTER HONOR
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Merle Haggard says his trip to the nation's capital had "been wonderful." And it's no surprise. He was there as one of the five recipients of this year's Kennedy Center Honors last night. As part of the deal, Haggard and his invited guests got to meet President Barack Obama and his wife, first lady Michelle. Haggard said the first family was "very cordial to us" and "made us feel at home." And he says he was happy to have had the chance to take pictures with the president and the other honorees, which included Paul McCartney and Oprah Winfrey. Sheryl Crow was on hand for the tribute to Haggard. She noted that country music artists have "a strong sense of community" and that people like Haggard have "set that tone for all of us."