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High eggs-iety: White House Easter event begins

April 25, 2011|By Katherine Skiba
(Charles Dharapak/AP )

The Obamas opened the rain-soaked South Lawn of the White House Monday to tens of thousands of wee ones for the annual Easter Egg Roll, a 19th century tradition they’ve modernized with pop singers, top chefs and star athletes.

About 30,000 people, many giving their Easter Day attire another go, were expected on a sunny day when the temperature is expected to reach 80 degrees.

This year’s event has been dubbed “Get Up and Go,” which means some sweat-inducing activities were on tap, along with the Easter Bunny, who delivered 19,000 hard-boiled eggs.

The party is expected to draw Sesame Street's Elmo, singer Colbie Caillat and singer Willow Smith, a new sensation thanks to her song and video, “Whip My Hair.”

Others expected: actress Geena Davis, chef Jacques Pepin and athletes including skater Kristi Yamaguchi and tennis player Chris Evert.

 The egg roll, which dates to 1878 when Rutherford B. Hayes was president, is the third of the Obama administration. 

 Many of the 30,000 tickets for the event were distributed after a free lottery that saw requests for 205,739 tickets.

The doors opened at 7:30 a.m. EDT and the event continues until 6:20 p.m. It’s being live-streamed at www.whitehouse.gov.  President Obama is expected to visit the party at around 10:15 EDT.

 His mother-in-law, first grandmother Marian Robinson, made an early appearance Monday and started reading a Dr. Seuss book to those lucky enough to score a ticket to the capital’s favorite spring fling. Her sidekick: the Cat in the Hat, who was getting the crowd fired up for more fun to follow.

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