Meredith Vieira hosts a special look at Christmases past and present in the White House, featuring former first ladies and their children
NBC celebrates the holidays with unprecedented access to the most famous home in America in "A White House Christmas: First Families Remember," on Thursday, Dec. 20 (8 p.m.).
Hosted by multiple Emmy Award winner Meredith Vieira, the special takes a look at Christmases past and present with 10 presidential families over the past 50 years, featuring interviews with first lady Michelle Obama and former first ladies Laura Bush, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Barbara Bush and Rosalynn Carter. Several first children also share their holiday memories, including Barbara Bush, Jenna Bush Hager, Chelsea Clinton, Dorothy Bush Koch, Michael Reagan, Amy Carter, Susan Ford Bales, Tricia Nixon Cox, Julie Nixon Eisenhower, Lynda Johnson Robb and Luci Baines Johnson.
Before Obama announced this year's holiday theme, "Joy to All," Vieira went behind the scenes with staff and volunteers to find out what it takes to prepare for the 2012 holiday season and thousands of visitors each day. The plans include the decoration of more than 50 trees inside the White House, and helping the White House pastry kitchen to unveil its elaborate gingerbread house creations.
"Christmas at the White House is much more than adding lights to a tree," said host Vieira. "Long-standing traditions are revived each year to pay tribute to seasons past, and messages of joy and hope encourage everyone, regardless of party or position, to share with family and friends all the blessings of the season."
An encore presentation of the special will air Friday, Dec. 21 (9 p.m.).For more information on "A White House Christmas: First Families Remember," visit NBC.com's "Movies & Specials" site: http://www.nbc.com/specials.