Note to those still DC denizens still crackin on the infringement of their egg roll entitlements by outsiders - These tourists are bringing American dollars while staying overnight, inducing a wee boomlet in some nest eggs. Also, the White House is hosting a 2009 Spring Garden Tour encompassing the Rose garden, Jaqueline Kennedy Garden and the Children's Garden on April 18 & 19th. So for those who missed the line tango over eggs, have an opportunity to get in line at the Ellipse Visitor Pavillion as it is on a first come first served pending weather.
The colorful Dolley Payne Todd Madison kicked the concept off in 1814 with invites for children to bring their art covered eggs to the United States Capitol. Gardeners protested that their brand new grass would be trampled persuading the US Congressto pass a childish law, The Turf Protection Act, that kids could no longer use the US Capitol as a play station. Among others, the children of Rutherford B. and Lucy Hayes petitioned Mom and Dad (otherwise known as the President and First Lady) that this shall not stand and they hosted the event to the White House. In 1933, Eleanor Roosevelt welcomed all in person and within the sound of her voice via the radio. Harry Truman lived at Blair House for much of his presidency while the White House underwent exhaustive renovations. First Lady of the USA and all things pink, Mamie Eisenhower, revived the egg roll with a twist, she integrated the community activity. (Photo Dolley Madison painting White House Art Collection)
One of the most interesting innovations came during the last year of Pat Nixon's tenure. Spoons straight from the White House kitchen were used for egg races. Mrs. Nixon also picked the lucky staffer to play the starring roll as the Easter Bunny. Which White house staffer gets that duty this year? Not quite sure who will be the biggest draw, the president, Michelle Obama or the 7 foot tall bunny. Intricacies of planning these events are as fragile as some of the beautiful artwork the White house hand paints onto display eggs or other fine eggshell work from artisans. We will have to watch to see what new innovations Mrs. Obama will spring upon the guests. The advent of the petting zoo, the souvenir egg and exhibits with the White House providing a few treats is just the base line. (photo by shows green fencing for White House egg roll already in place)
New this year, a number of gay parents and their children are welcomed with open arms at the Easter Monday egg roll. Cool beans.