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Minnesota turkeys heading from Willmar to White House

Minnesota turkeys heading from Willmar to White House Click to Enlarge Photo:

Nov 21, 2011 at 11:05 am

WILLMAR, Minn. (AP) - Two Minnesota grown turkeys get an official send-off at Willmar High School on Monday before going to Washington to be pardoned by President Barack Obama on Wednesday.

They come from a flock of 30 potential presidential turkeys raised and socialized by Future Farmers of America members in Willmar.

The White House tradition dates to 1947. Minnesota is the country's top turkey producer, and the lucky tom comes from the farm of National Turkey Federation Chairman Richard Huisinga, who'll present it to the Obamas. Four students will also travel to Washington.

Minnesota turkeys have starred at White House pardons 11 times, most recently in 2005.

Both birds will live out their days at George Washington's Mount Vernon estate. The remaining 28 won't be so lucky -- they'll be processed and the meat donated to Willmar area food shelves.

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