White House Gets Ready for 'Big Block of Cheese Day'

PHOTO: The White House in Washington, D.C. Getty Images
The White House in Washington, D.C.

It's officially the cheesiest day of the year at the White House.

As part of its post-State of the Union push, the White House is hosting the third annual "Big Block of Cheese Day," an opportunity for Americans to take to social media to ask questions of White House officials, cabinet members, lawmakers and "special guests," including Vice President Joe Biden and First Lady Michelle Obama.

The online tradition was inspired by President Andrew Jackson, who in 1837 held an open house for Americans at the White House where they could discuss the issues of the day with his staff, all while eating slabs of cheddar from a 1,400-pound block of cheese.

That cheese tradition was then popularized by the TV show "The West Wing," which featured episodes where the fictional Bartlet administration hosted a "Big Block of Cheese Day" to meet with underrepresented interest groups.

Bradley Whitford, who played Deputy White House Chief of Staff Josh Lyman, on the West Wing, is even joining the White House in the cheesy endeavor.

The bad cheese puns have already been plentiful.

"It’s that time of gruyère again," the White House wrote in a blog previewing the event. "Excited? So are brie."