Salina Teachers Help Decorate the White House

A couple of Salina teachers had a Thanksgiving holiday they won’t soon forget, they spent three days in Washington DC helping decorate the White House for the holidays.

Out of over 3,000 people from all over the country who volunteered, Caleb Stewart and Lacie Stewart were among 300 volunteers chosen to help decorate the White House, under the guidance of the First Lady, Dr. Jill Biden. Caleb teaches English at Salina South High School, while Lacie teaches third grade at Schilling Elementary School.

Caleb tells KSAL News he got the idea to volunteer after watching a show on HGTV about holidays at the White House. After doing a little research, he learned how to apply and filled out an online application. While sitting at a soccer game in October he got a call from the White House, telling him he and Lacie had been picked to participate, pending a background check.

The Stewarts flew to Washington DC on Wednesday, November 22nd, the day before Thanksgiving.  After checking into a hotel across the street from the White House, they spent Thanksgiving Day seeing the sights and museums of DC, most of which were open.

On Friday, November 24th, they got down to work inside the White House.  The Stewarts were in a group  of 15 people who were assigned to decorate the Oval Office, the Vice President’s Office, the Cabinet Room, and the Roosevelt Room.


They spent three full days, Friday through Sunday November 24th -26th, decorating the rooms.

The Stewarts met many people from across the country. Caleb says the spirit of cooperation and friendship among everyone who participated was inspiring.


On Monday, November 27th, the Stewarts attended a reception with the First Lady, prior to her unveiling the decorations for the country to see. Following the reception they were able to meet the First Lady.

During the event at the White House, the First Lady officially unveiled the holiday and seasonal decor, offered a holiday message to the Nation, and thanked the volunteers from across the country who helped decorate the White House for the season.

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Overview of the 2023 White House Holidays