WASHINGTON (AP) — The Obama family has welcomed thousands of children to the sun-splashed south lawn of the White House for the annual Easter Egg Roll, an essential rite of spring.

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The Egg Roll dates back to 1878, when President Rutherford B. Hayes was in office. In the main event, children race to push eggs through the grass using wooden spoons.

This year’s roll also features basketball, yoga and healthy eating activities, all part of first lady Michelle Obama’s campaign against childhood obesity. As she welcomed some of the 30,000 guests to the White House Monday, Mrs. Obama said she hoped children would have fun while learning about how they could lead healthier lives.