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For Immediate Release
Office of the First Lady
March 22, 2008

2008 White House Easter Egg Roll: Frequently Asked Questions

Q. How long has this event been a White House tradition?

A. President Rutherford B. Hayes officially opened the White House grounds to local children for egg rolling on Easter Monday in 1878. Successive Presidents have continued the tradition of inviting children to the South Lawn for egg rolling and other activities and entertainment. On occasion, the Easter Egg Roll has been cancelled, either due to inclement weather or in times of war (World War I and World War II).

Q. Is this event open to the public?

A. Yes. The majority of tickets to this year’s White House Easter Egg Roll were distributed to the public on Saturday, March 22. A smaller allotment of tickets was made available to the public on Monday, March 24, 2008.

Q. What is this year’s theme?

A. The 2008 White House Easter Egg Roll will focus on the importance of ocean conservation to our national heritage, economy, and security. As children explore the White House grounds, they will learn about our oceans and how to preserve them for future generations. Through education and volunteerism, all families can make a difference in keeping our oceans clean.

The President and Mrs. Bush are committed to continuing to protect our natural resources through wise stewardship and sensible management. In 2004, the President released his Ocean Action Plan to promote responsible use and preservation of our oceans and coastal resources. Of the 88 actions in the President's 2004 Ocean Action Plan, this Administration has met or is on schedule to meet all commitments, and more than a quarter of the existing actions have activities that “moved beyond” the initial commitments.

The message of ocean conservation will be present throughout the White House grounds as children learn about how they can clean marine debris and keep our oceans clean and safe. Children will be able to view and touch marine life, interact with U.S. Coast Guard’s Officer Snook, help paint visions of the sea on a 20-foot mural with the help of renowned marine life artist Wyland, and collect literature on ocean conservation.

Q. Were any special groups invited to participate?

A. Yes. The President and Mrs. Bush extended a special invitation through USA Freedom Corps to organizations that answered the President’s call to service, specifically within the area of ocean conservation.

Q. How many people will attend the event?

A. 22,000 tickets were distributed for the 2008 Easter Egg Roll.

Q. Who is hosting the 2008 Easter Egg Roll?

A. The President and Mrs. Bush will host the 2008 Easter Egg Roll.

Q. What kinds of activities will guests participate in?

A. Easter Egg Roll activities begin on the Ellipse with food and entertainment. On the White House South Lawn, children ages 7 or younger can take part in the egg roll. Guests can enjoy reading corners, egg coloring, art activities, face painting, stage entertainment, music, magicians, and other activities. Strolling characters interact with children as they roam the South Lawn. At the reading corners, visitors are treated to storytelling by authors of popular children’s books, athletes, actors, Cabinet members, and other senior Bush Administration officials.

Q. Who dyes the eggs? How many are dyed?

A. The American Egg Board provided more than 15,000 eggs, including:

Q. Who designed the art for the commemorative egg?

A. Michael McWillie of Parker, Texas designed this year’s commemorative wooden egg and poster, as well as the artwork found on the tickets and program. Mr. McWillie is well known for his whimsical paintings of Scottish Terriers. Mr. McWillie runs an advertising and design company, McWillie Design.

Q. What will Children receive upon departure from the Easter Egg Roll?

A. Commemorative White House wooden Easter egg
Activity coloring book
White House bookmark
My American Journal
Baseball cards of the President and Mrs. Bush’s pets; Barney, Miss Beazley, and India
Children’s book
Commemorative poster
“Keep the Oceans Clean” stickers

Q. Who are the guest readers?

A. Mrs. Laura Bush, First Lady of the United States
Miss Jenna Bush
Mrs. Barbara Bush, Former First Lady of the United States
Elaine Chao, Secretary of Labor
Carlos Gutierrez, Secretary of Commerce
Michael Leavitt, Secretary of Health & Human Services and Mrs. Jacalyn Leavitt
Alphonso Jackson, Secretary of Housing & Urban Development
Henry Paulson, Jr., Secretary of the Treasury and Mrs. Wendy Paulson
Mary Peters, Secretary of Transportation
Ed Schafer, Secretary of Agriculture
Margaret Spellings, Secretary of Education
Stephen Johnson, Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency
Ambassador Susan Schwab, United States Trade Representative
James Connaughton, Chairman, Council on Environmental Quality
Josh Bolten, Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff
Anita McBride, Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff to the First Lady
Dana Perino, Assistant to the President and Press Secretary
Troy Aikman, Sportscaster and former NFL player
Christopher and Kyle Massey, Actors

Q. Which children’s book authors are reading on the South Lawn?

A. Nancy Tafuri; Have You Seen My Duckling?
Rosemary Wells; Voyage To The Bunny Planet

Q. Who are the entertainers?

A. All For Kidz
Arne Dixon and his team of world-class yo-yo professionals perform in an interactive show featuring outstanding yo-yo tricks.

Buck Howdy with BB
With fresh, fun and lively songs, Buck and BB encourage the entire family to get into the spirit of the Old West. Through their original lyrics and energetic spirit, the duo will have the audience on their feet and dancing in no time.

Jason and Matthew Tardy and Michael Miclon mix all elements of Fusion theater including: juggling, improvisation, theater, comedy, darkness, light, music and more melded together to create a performance that leaves audiences breathless.

Imagination Movers
Through a series of songs and dances, the Imagination Movers teaches children that with imagination, anything is possible.

Jonas Brothers
A group of three brothers–Joseph, Kevin, and Nicholas–the trio sings a variety of songs born from direct experiences in their personal lives. Their lyrics tell about the highs and lows of everyday life. They have released two albums, It’s About Time in 2006 and The Jonas Brothers in 2007, and performed with Miley Cyrus in the Best of Both Worlds Tour with stops in fifty-four cities.

Jordan Pruitt
At 15 years old, Jordan has an album called No Ordinary Girl and a fan base of both children and adults.

Mickey Mouse Clubhouse from Disney Channel
For generations, Mickey has been teaching young people that the key to happiness is having a positive outlook on life. With his boyish charm and ever-present enthusiasm, Mickey is sure to put a smile on everyone’s face.

Raggs Band
Raggs stars five colorful canine characters and their wisecracking pet cat, Dumpster, who hang together in their own cool clubhouse. Raggs and his friends are not average canines; they’re talented musicians and make great rock ‘n’ roll music.

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus
Agile, athletic and full of fun, Bello, the master of merriment delivers hilarity to “The Greatest Show On Earth.” Drawing from seven generations of circus family tradition, Bello Nock has emerged as one of the most popular and acclaimed performers in the world. Keeping it all together is Ringmaster Tyron McFarlan, a veteran of musical theater and a former military captain.

Sesame Street
By sharing a love of music, games and laughter, the characters of “Sesame Street” have been putting a smile on children’s faces for years. Elmo, a ticklish monster always on the lookout for a new adventure, Zoe, and their friend Gordon, bring out the imaginative side of any audience.

Steven Songs
Through a mixture of great songs, humorous stories and fun melodies, Steve’s music has been gathering families together for years.

A marine life artist known for his monumental murals, Wyland teaches children how to paint marine life in an effort to promote awareness of clean water and healthy oceans. With galleries throughout the United States, Wyland was recently selected as an official artist to commemorate the United States Olympic Team for the 2008 Summer Olympics.

Animal Stage

Peter Gros
As the president of Green Valley Center for Wildlife Education, Peter is dedicated to educating young people about the importance of wildlife conservation. Through such shows as Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom, he offers children the chance to get a first-hand look at wildlife and animal habitats.

Bobbi Colorado
With over 35 years of experience with dogs, Bobbi Colorado runs the “The Wild Bunch,” where she is always on the lookout for new dogs to star in television and films. Some of her recent work includes the movie Secondhand Lions, as well as a number of commercials.

Dan Breeding of Wild Animal Encounters

Dan Breeding brings people face to face with exotic wildlife while teaching about the benefits of the natural world. Wild Animal Encounters strives to educate young people about the importance of taking care of the environment by providing a close-up view of the animals that inhabit it.

Magic Stage

The Magic Stage features some of the best children’s magicians from around the country. Using magic and audience participation, these amazing magicians teach children important life lessons. They will be appearing on stage as well as strolling the grounds performing their mystifying feats of magic.


Ralph the Great
Stephen Bargatze
Jozo Bozo
Emanuel Shabum
Fairy Twinkletoes
Trixie Bond
Ken Scott
Domino the Great
Dr. Eldoonie
Michael Grandinetti
Norm Marini

Strolling Characters

Abby Cadabby / “Sesame Street”
Alpha Pig
B.B. Rabbit
Bugs Bunny
Cabbage Patch Kids
Cera / Land Before Time
Charlie Brown
Clifford the Big Red Dog
Corduroy Bear
Cotton the Bunny
Curious George
Dr. Seuss’ Cat in the Hat
Feathers the Duck
Ginger Snap
Little Nutbrown Hare
Littlefoot / Land Before Time
Maestro Mouse
Maisy Mouse
Maya and Miguel
Mr. McFeely the Speedy Delivery Man / “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood”
Orange Blossom
Pat the Bunny
Patchy Panda
Peter Rabbit
Po / Kung Fu Panda
Princess Presto
Racing Presidents / Washington Nationals
Raggedy Ann
Raggedy Andy
Sanctuary Sam
Screech / Washington Nationals
Strawberry Shortcake
Terrence the Turtle
Tweety Bird
U.S. Coast Guard’s Officer Snook
White House Bunnies and Eggs
Wonder Red
Woodrow the White House Mouse

For more information, please visit the White House website at: /easter/2008/


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