Al Roker may not have been paid a visit by the Butter Man, but he received a special call from someone else during Thursday's Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. As the famed meteorologist took to the streets of New York City Thanksgiving morning to host NBC's broadcast of the annual holiday event, President Joe Biden and Frist Lady Jill Biden, who watched the festivities from Nantucket, called Roker during the broadcast to share a holiday message with America.
When Roker received the surprise call, he hold his phone to the screen to show viewers from home who was ringing, exclaiming, "Oh my gosh, look at who's calling." After answering the call, he went on to encourage the president and first lady to share a message with the country, stating, "what's your message to the American folks on this Thanksgiving Day?" Biden went on to share, "my message is after two years you're back, America's back."
"There's nothing we're unable to overcome, Al, and you're one of the reasons for that, pal. You're always up. You're always rooting," Biden continued before adding with a laugh, "I'm waiting for Santa. Wish we were there with you, Al." Roker responded before the call ended, "we appreciate it, Mr. President. Thank you so much. I hope you're going to continue to watch the parade. Santa is coming. Santa is coming, Mr. President!" After the call, Roker joked that he was unsure how Biden got his number, telling viewers, "well, he's the president of the United States, I guess he can do that."
As Roker and his Today co-hosts Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb prepared for their day's big festivities – the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade kicked off at 9 a.m. ET and lasted until noon – Biden and the first lady shared a video message to the nation on Twitter Thanksgiving morning, the president telling Americans, "this is always a special time in America but this year the blessings of Thanksgiving are especially meaningful." The first lady added that "after being apart last year, we have a new appreciation for those little moments we can't plan or replicate. The music of laughter in a warm, full kitchen. The thump of small feet making big sounds. The circle of faces crowded around our dining room table, glowing in the candlelight."
The Biden's concluded the recorded message by sharing that for them, "Thanksgiving has always been a cherished time to enjoy annual traditions that have evolved into sacred rituals with our children and grandchildren: throwing the football, preparing family recipes, lighting candles, and setting the table." The president added noted that for many, this Thanksgiving will mark the first in-person family gathering since the pandemic, Biden stating, "as we celebrate, we will also be thinking of the many families feeling the pain of an empty chair at the Thanksgiving table. You are not alone, and our Nation stands with you."