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Nov 16, 2016 Washington, D.C.

The White House Historical Association announced today the release of its new publication, The White House Kids’ “State Dinner” Cookbook: Winning Recipes from the Healthy Lunchtime Challenge. The 500-plus page cookbook is a collection of 273 kid-crafted recipes that were submitted to First Lady Michelle Obama’s Healthy Lunchtime Challenge and included in an online cookbook as part of her Let’s Move! initiative. Gathered over five years, one winner was selected from each state and territory each year and invited to attend that year’s Kids’ “State Dinner.” 

Children aged eight to 12 were invited to create a healthy, affordable, original and delicious lunch recipe and submit it to the Healthy Lunchtime Challenge. Entrants were encouraged to reference ChooseMyPlate.gov to ensure recipes met the USDA’s recommended nutrition guidance by representing each of the food groups. 

“Over the years, we received 6,000 recipe submissions and were blown away by the energy, imagination, diversity, and culinary skills reflected in each and every one,” said Mrs. Obama in her foreword for the “State Dinner” Cookbook. “After the recipes were prepared, tasted and rated by a panel of judges, more than 270 young people and their families representing every state and territory in America were selected to attend our White House Kids’ “State Dinners” and show off their dishes.”

The Association’s cookbook is a result of the Let’s Move!  initiative, which has succeeded in encouraging healthy eating and physical activity across America. Until Mrs. Obama created the White House Kitchen Garden, there had been no substantial working vegetable garden at the White House since the 1870s, except for small “victory gardens” during WWI and WWII. 

“Mrs. Obama wanted to start a national conversation around healthy living and returned to an older White House tradition in planting fruits and vegetables for the first family’s meals,” said Stewart D. McLaurin, President of the White House Historical Association. 

The White House Kids’ “State Dinner” Cookbook includes over 500 pages of recipes, chef spotlights, nutrition information, a special letter from First Lady Michelle Obama, and full-page photos of recipes, the White House Kitchen Garden, and The White House Kids’ “State Dinners” from 2012-2016. 

The book is available for purchase from the White House Historical Association for $39.95 online at shop.whitehousehistory.org.

About the white house historical association

First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy envisioned a restored White House that conveyed a sense of history through its decorative and fine arts. She sought to inspire Americans, especially children, to explore and engage with American history and its presidents. In 1961, the White House Historical Association was established to support her vision to preserve and share the Executive Mansion’s legacy for generations to come. Supported entirely by private resources, the Association’s mission is to assist in the preservation of the state and public rooms, fund acquisitions for the White House permanent collection, and educate the public on the history of the White House. Since its founding, the Association has given more than $45 million to the White House in fulfillment of its mission. 

To learn more about the White House Historical Association, please visit WhiteHouseHistory.org

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