This week President Biden continued the time-honored Thanksgiving tradition of pardoning two turkeys from ending up on the dinner table. This year’s lucky turkeys, Liberty and Bell, hail from Willmar, Minnesota.
The 20-week old birds weighing over 40 pounds were raised by Jennie-O, a Minnesota-based turkey producer. They were specially chosen for their good looks and calm temperament to make the trip to Washington D.C.
After the presidential pardon, Liberty and Bell will return home to our state. The University of Minnesota will provide a comfortable forever home for the turkeys on the St. Paul campus. They’ll live out their days under the care of students and staff.
Minnesotans have a lot to be proud of this Thanksgiving. Our state supplied the official White House turkeys! Liberty and Bell are local celebrities now. I hope they get a chance to attend a Minnesota Gophers game and meet Goldy the mascot during their time at the U of M.
While most turkeys won’t be as lucky as Liberty and Bell, Minnesotans will eat plenty of them this holiday. Our state produces over 40 million turkeys each year, meaning lots of Minnesota farm families benefit from the Thanksgiving demand.
As we carve our turkeys, let’s toast the workers, farmers, truck drivers, and everyone else who helps bring this signature Thanksgiving meal to our tables. And especially this year, thank Liberty and Bell for representing Minnesota so well!