The White House Announced today, Feb. 21, that the traditional Easter Egg Roll on the White House lawn will be held this year on April 1. Tickets will be distributed through an online lottery. For a chance to win tickets to the event, citizens may enter the lottery beginning today through Monday, Feb. 25.
This year the White House is expecting 35,000 guests on the South Lawn for games, stories and the traditional egg roll. The event will also feature cooking demonstrations and sport activities to show families ways they can incorporate healthy foods into their diets and exercise into their daily routines, activities promoted by First Lady Michelle Obama with her “Let’s Move!” initiative.
The White House Egg Roll tradition was started in 1878 by President Rutherford B. Hayes. Prior to that, according to the White House, children in Washington would roll eggs on the grounds of the U.S. Capitol each Easter Monday. A budget-conscious Congress outlawed the use of the Capitol grounds as a playground in 1877, unwilling to pay for landscaping repairs required after playing children damaged the lawns. At the request of several children, President Hayes agreed to open the White House Lawn to any child that wished to roll an egg.
Participants in the egg roll will come home with an official 2013 souvenir egg made from hardwood and stamped with the signatures of the President and the First Lady.