Popcorn got the famous presidential pardon on Wednesday and was named America's 2013 National Thanksgiving Turkey, but Caramel was spared from someone's dinner table too.
The two birds were chosen out of 80 contenders from a Minnesota farm and Popcorn was chosen the winner by Americans who cast their votes online.
Popcorn got his 15 minutes of fame during a soggy ceremony outside the White House with President Barack Obama. His daughters Sasha and Malia looked on as the president issued the official pardon and told Popcorn he would be spared from the cranberry sauce this holiday season. Here are some fun facts about this year's most famous turkeys and the strange tradition that sees America's president interacting with them.
- Popcorn and Caramel have the same birthday. They grew up together on John Burkel's farm near Badger, Minn.
- Caramel likes rocking out to Lady Gaga and eating soybeans while Popcorn prefers Beyonce and, as his name suggests, eating corn.
- Popcorn weighs in at 37 pounds six ounces and Caramel tips the scales at 38 pounds four ounces.
- The two turkeys stayed at the posh Willard Hotel close to the White House once they arrived in town earlier this week.
- After the ceremony, the birds go to George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate where they will be on display for visitors during the Christmas season. Then the turkeys will travel to their permanent home at Morven Park's Turkey Hill, the historic turkey farm located at the home of former Virginia governor Westmorland Davis in Leesburg, Va.
- 2012 was the first time Americans could vote online to choose which bird got the presidential pardon.
- Last year's contenders for the title, Cobbler and Gobbler, are both already in turkey heaven reports US News. They didn't make it through the year.
- Including today's turkeys, Obama has pardoned 10 big birds. According to the Washington Post, he has pardoned 40 human beings.
- Americans began sending their president turkeys for Thanksgiving back in the 1800s as a gift. In 1947, the National Turkey Federation took on the responsibility of being the official turkey supplier to the president.
- It's not clear when exactly presidents started sparing the turkeys from their dining tables. Abraham Lincoln apparently did it one year at the request of his son and John F. Kennedy and Richard Nixon were also known for sending the turkeys along and not feasting on them. But it was George H.W. Bush in 1989 that started the official pardoning tradition according to the White House.