Obamas, Easter Bunny Kick off Easter Egg Roll

Celebrity guests, yoga garden among features of 135th annual celebration

Monday, Apr 1, 2013  |  Updated 12:12 PM PDT
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Thousands of kids took to the White House lawn for the annual Easter Egg Roll. Families also enjoyed the wooden eggs, dancing and Easter egg hunt. News4's Melissa Mollet reports.

Melissa Mollet

Thousands of kids took to the White House lawn for the annual Easter Egg Roll. Families also enjoyed the wooden eggs, dancing and Easter egg hunt. News4's Melissa Mollet reports.

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With the Easter Bunny at her side, First Lady Michelle Obama told young people to "keep moving, be healthy" as she welcomed them to the White House Easter Egg Roll Monday.

A crowd of 35,000 is expected at the 135th annual event, which also features a star-studded list of guests.

Among the celebrities due to show up: British boy band The Wanted, Academy Award-nominated actress Quvenzhane Wallis ("Beasts of the Southern Wild"), singer Jordin Sparks, NASCAR driver Danica Patrick, Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson -- and the Nationals' Racing Presidents, who will swing by despite the fact that they'll also be needed over at Nats Park for opening day.

The massive crowd -- who will gain admission via staggered entry -- includes guests from the District and all 50 states. Members of the public received their passes via an online lottery earlier this month. A number of military families also received tickets.

The event will aim to teach kids fun ways to stay fit, in keeping with this year's theme "Be Healthy, Be Active, Be You!" Among the special features will be a yoga garden for children.

Michelle Obama reminded the participants to take advantage of the educational activities.

"Today, we want you to have a great time. We want you to run around. We want you to go over and see the White House Garden. We want you to learn about making tasty, healthy food," she said. "But overall, we want you guys to have a good time and keep moving and be healthy. And, kids, eat your vegetables, OK?"

She was joined by President Obama - who quickly turned the stage over to his wife, who he called "the star of the family" - and by daughters Sasha and Malia. They were introduced by the Easter Bunny and by "Kid President" and viral video star Robby Novak, who had starred in a April Fools Day video from the White House earlier that day.

Gesturing at her husband, Michelle Obama said the Kid President was going to "spend a little time in the Oval Office just fixing things up for this President."

The Obamas then went down to the South Lawn to roll Easter Eggs, part of the tradition.

The egg roll happened despite fears earlier last month that the annual bash would become a victim of the sequester.

The weather is also cooperating, with the forecast calling for sunny skies and temperatures in the 60s.

This year's souvenir Easter eggs will come in purple, blue, yellow and pink. A special teal egg features the paw print of the Obama family dog, Bo.

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