Meet Peanut Butter and Jelly, the Turkeys Who Will Be Pardoned by President Biden on Friday
Feast your eyes on these two turkeys, the lucky animals who will be pardoned at the White House by President Joe Biden this Friday, Nov. 19, ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday.
The 40-pound southern Indiana natives — now named Peanut Butter and Jelly — arrived in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday, where they met fans before retreating to their room at the city's swank Willard InterContinental Hotel. Hotel staff rolled out a red carpet for the pair, who spent the day on Zoom calls ahead of a meal of corn and soybeans and a rest on the property's plush beds.
According to Time, turkeys have been living it up at the five-star D.C. property since 2014. Handlers spend an hour prepping the room ahead of the guest of honors' arrival, covering baseboards with brown paper to protect from pecks and adding pine shavings to the floor to make cleaning messes a breeze. The National Turkey Federation — the organization that provides the animals to the White House each year — foots the bill.
Though two turkeys come to Washington every year, only one gets the official pardon from the president, while the other serves as an alternate. However, neither will see a dinner table.
Instead, after Friday's ceremony, Peanut Butter and Jelly will head back to Indiana, where they will live out their lives at Purdue University under the care of faculty and students in the Department of Animal Sciences.
Earlier this fall, a handful of celebrities teamed up with Farm Sanctuary to ask President Biden to instead send the turkeys to one of Farm Sanctuary's facilities after the pardon.
In a petition signed by 12 celebrities, Farm Sanctuary asked the president "to truly honor these birds," giving them "the opportunity to dust bathe, feel grass beneath their feet, enjoy a robust social life, and receive personalized care." The plan to return to Indiana, however, remains in place.
The history of the turkey pardon dates back to 1863 and President Abraham Lincoln, according to White House history, though photos didn't happen until 1960, when President Dwight D. Eisenhower greeted a bird at the White House. In the years since, all presidents have participated in the annual tradition.
This story originally appeared on People.com.