Jessica Sanchez wowed the first family and White House guests with her power lungs on Monday as she opened up festivities for the Easter Egg Roll on the South Lawn.
The “American Idol” runner up, who made headlines recently for her diva role on “Glee,” sang the Star-Spangled Banner. She joined dozens of professional athletes, including Puerto Rican gymnast John Orozco, and thousands of children for event.
“It’s Jessica Sanchez everybody! Give her a hand of applause!” an energized President Barack Obama told the crowd.
This is not the first time Sanchez impresses while singing the Star-Spangled Banner. Sanchez, 17, showed off her vocals last year during the NBA Finals, the boxing match between Manny Pacquiao and Timothy Bradley (which both took place in June) and again in November during the National Democratic Convention.
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The Mexican-Filipino singer told Fox News Latino last year that her father, whom she is close with and even dedicated a song for him while her time on “Idol,” is an officer in the U.S. Navy.
“He’s been emailing me back and forth,” Sanchez said. “He’s definitely proud.”
The theme of this year's Egg Roll is "Be Healthy, Be Active, Be You!" — fitting with first lady Michelle Obama's campaign to lower childhood obesity rates by encouraging physical activity. The president's basketball court was open for play, along with an obstacle course and yoga garden.
A dance party was set up at the "Hop To It Stage," and professional athletes and coaches were helping teach their sports in the "Eggtivity Zone." Among the stars scheduled to attend were Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson, NASCAR driver Danica Patrick, Washington Wizards point guard John Wall and Orozco.
The White House had warned more than 35,000 expected attendees that the 135-year tradition could have been cancelled because of budget battles with Congress this year. White House tours have been called off because of government-wide spending cuts, but the egg roll was not.
The National Park Service, which organizes the event, says it's largely funded by sales of commemorative wooden eggs, plus some private donations. The park service would not say how much the event costs.
The White House said 14,500 eggs were dyed for the egg roll and hunt, with another 4,500 hard-boiled eggs available for children to decorate. There are also special eggs that make a sound like a chirping bird so visually impaired children can participate in the hunt.
This report contains material from The Associated Press.