VIRGINIA BEACH (AP) -- People with tickets to see President Barack Obama in Va. Beach on Friday lined up hours ahead of the event to get a good seat inside Green Run High School.

The line was already around the building by 8:00 a.m.

Air Force One landed at Norfolk International Airport at 10:45 a.m. and went from there to a restaurant and then on to Green Run High School, the first of two stops in Hampton Roads.

The president, with tie and jacket off, was followed by Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) and Democratic Senate candidate TimKaine, a former Virginia governor. Among those meeting him at the airport was Norfolk Mayor Paul Fraim.

The trio stopped at Rick's Cafe, close to Oceana Naval Air Station, and chatted with some military wives.

Kevin Sweeney, the assistant fire marshal for Virginia Beach, told ABC News there were more than 1,400 people in the main event site and 700 watching in the overflow area of the school.

The president is seeking to shore up support for his re-election in Virginia, a state that he won four years ago after decades of domination by Republican presidential candidates.

For challenger Mitt Romney, Virginia now looms as a battleground crucial to his presidential hopes.

Obama will travel to the southeast and southwest corners of the state on Friday, courting young and African-American voters in the Virginia Beach-Hampton area before turning to more conservative Roanoke. Obama will speak at Green Run High School in Virginia Beach before traveling to Hampton, where he'll appear at Phoebus High School.

Hours later, Obama will speak at a Roanoke fire station. On Saturday, Obama will campaign in Richmond, a once-staunchly Republican region that he won in 2008.

The Obama campaign says the president will discuss his plan to restore middle class security by paying down our debt in a balanced way that ensures that everyone pays their fair share while still investing in the things we need to create jobs and grow our economy over the long term, like education, energy, and infrastructure. President Obama believes the only way to build an economy meant to last is from the middle out, not the top down, campaign officials said.

Both campaigns acknowledge Virginia's new role as a fiercely contested state after years of being virtually overlooked in presidential politics. Obama won the state by a 53-46 margin over his 2008 rival, Sen. John McCain.

Virginia Beach details:
The Pledge of Allegiance will be led by veteran Jim Donovan, a retired Navy Captain.
The invocation will be given by Bishop William Scott, Senior Pastor at Pleasant Grove Baptist Church.
The national anthem will be performed by local resident Denise Battle.
Remarks will be delivered by Organizing for America Regional Field Director Jay Plant, U.S. Senator Mark Warner, and former Virginia Governor Tim Kaine.
President Obama will be introduced by Virginia Beach resident Ericka 'Ricki' Deloris Thompson, a military spouse and mother of two young girls.

Hampton details:
The crowd will be welcomed by Hampton Mayor Molly Ward.
The Pledge of Allegiance will be led by WWII and Vietnam veteran William Tucker.
The invocation will be given by Pastor Richard Willis, Senior Pastor at First Baptist Church in Hampton.
The national anthem will be performed by Andolyn Medina, Ms. VA Outstanding Teen 2012.
Remarks will be delivered by Organizing for America Regional Field Director Nigel Tann, U.S. Congressman Bobby Scott, and U.S. Senator Mark Warner.
President Obama will be introduced by former Va. Governor Tim Kaine.

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