from I Want to Be President

1984 White House Easter Egg Roll 01

Program for the 1984 Easter Egg Roll, with art by Guy and Brad Gilchrist.

The White House Easter Egg Roll has been a White House tradition since President Rutherford B. Hayes opened the grounds in 1878.


  • Unknown, Reagan-era: Caroll Spinney appears as Big Bird. Spinney recalled to a newspaper that Nancy Reagan stayed in the tea room, "barking orders... to this Air Force captain", making sure things were moving along. "We were supposed to do a show at 1:30, and at 10 minutes to 1 we overheard her snapping on the radio, 'I want the show to start now.' And he says, 'But I don't think we start just yet.' And she said, 'Well, tell them if they're not off the grounds by 2, they'll be thrown off.'"[1]
  • 1984: The Muppets were the theme of the Easter Egg Roll, and a couple of items were produced in conjunction with the event. The official bag and program featured Guy Gilchrist illustrations of Kermit, Miss Piggy, Fozzie and Robin, as well as Uncle Traveling Matt from Fraggle Rock; and a pin featured Miss Piggy.[2] The event was canceled because of rain.
  • 2002: (March 31) Elmo is among the costumed characters.[3]
  • 2003: (April 21) Bear performs. Zoe is among the costumed characters on the South Lawn.[4]
  • 2004: (April 21) Bear performs. Elmo is among the costumed characters.[5]
  • 2005: (March 27) Sonia Manzano is one of the guest readers.[6]
  • 2006: (April 16) Cookie Monster is among the costumed characters.[7]
  • 2007: (April 9) Elmo, Rosita and Gordon perform. Abby Cadabby is among the costumed characters.[8]
  • 2008: (March 24) Elmo, Zoe and Gordon perform. Abby Cadabby is among the costumed characters.[9]
  • 2009: (April 13) Abby Cadabby, Elmo, and Sid the Science Kid walk-around are among the costumed characters.[10][11] (The cast of The Electric Company performed.)[12]
  • 2010: (April 5) Elmo and Maria (Sonia Manzano) read Stretch at the event; the 2009 book is by Doreen Cronin and Scott Menchin. (YouTube) Abby Cadabby, Rosita, and Gordon also appeared.[13] Walkarounds of Elmo, Abby, and Henson's Sid and Buddy wandered. Sesame Street seed packs were handed out at the event.
  • 2011: (April 25) Theme of "Get Up and Go!", connected to First Lady Michelle Obama's Let's Move! initiative. Elmo, Maria (Sonia Manzano) and Gordon (Roscoe Orman) of Sesame Street reading. Separately, Art Smith is demonstrating health cooking. Abby and Rosita also known to have been in attendance.[14] Elmo also sang with Colbie Caillat. At the end of her story session, Kristi Yamaguchi made reference to Sesame Street. (YouTube)
  • 2012: Elmo, Abby and Gordon read The Monster at the End of This Book. (YouTube) Later, they perform on the Rockin' Egg Roll Stage. The stage show featured several classic Sesame songs (including "Welcome!," "Sing After Me," "A Very Simple Dance," "The Arm," the "Sesame Street Theme" and "Sing"). (YouTube) Costumed characters of Abby Cadabby and Elmo appeared, plus Henson characters Buddy and Sid.
  • 2013: Elmo (Ryan Dillon), Abby, Rosita and Gordon appeared at the event. Gordon and Abby read I Want to Be President at the Storytime Stage. (YouTube)
  • 2014: Mando, Abby, Rosita, and Cookie Monster performed on the Rockin' Egg Roll Stage, singing several Sesame songs (including "Welcome!," "Somebody Come and Play," "The Most Important Meal of the Day," "Baile," "A Very Simple Dance," "ABCs Are Moving You," and "C is for Cookie"). (YouTube)
  • 2015: Alan Muraoka read Just One You! with Cookie Monster. (YouTube)
  • 2016: Alan Muraoka read The Bunny Hop with Abby Cadabby. Elmo and Cookie Monster also appeared. (YouTube)
  • 2017: (April 17) Elmo is among the costumed characters.[15]
  • 2018: Alan Muraoka read Charlie Brown book with Elmo.



  • In 2010, Cookie Monster posted on Sesame Street's offical Twitter page, "Me not invited to Easter Egg Roll at White House. Me okay wit dat. Me rather get invited to ginerbread house anyway."[16]


  1. "Big Bird says he met Nancy the Grouch", The Milwaukee Sentinel, November 23, 1994.
  2. Kermitage.com - White House Easter Egg Hunt - 1984
  3. "White House Easter Egg Roll Information and History".
  4. "Fact Sheet: White House 2003 Easter Egg Roll Frequently Asked Questions". Office of the Press Secretary. April 21, 2003.
  5. "White House 2004 Easter Egg Roll : Frequently Asked Questions". Office of the First Lady. April 12, 2004.
  6. "Update: White House to Hold Annual Easter Egg Roll". Office of the First Lady. March 22, 2005.
  7. "White House Announces Easter Egg Roll Entertainment". Office of the First Lady. April 12, 2006.
  8. "2007 White House Easter Egg Roll: Frequently Asked Questions". Office of the First Lady. April 9, 2007.
  9. "2008 White House Easter Egg Roll: Frequently Asked Questions". Office of the First Lady. March 22, 2008.
  10. HensonCompany Twitter Account - April 10, 2009
  11. "NBC Today Show video"
  12. "PBS Engage status update"
  13. Facebook status for Sesame Street, 2 April 2010.
  14. @sesamestreet, "Almost time to meet the children! (And adults, too!)", Twitpic.com, April 25, 2011.
  15. Business Insider The Trumps hosted their first White House Easter Egg Roll — see the incredible photos Eliza Relman, April 17, 2017.
  16. "Cookie Monster storms Twitter as @sesamestreet gains a following", Los Angeles Times blogs, April 9, 2010.

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