THE STATE DINING ROOM AND GINGERBREAD HOUSE
The setting for the White House's most elegant entertaining is the State Dining Room where the famous George P. Healy portrait of Abraham Lincoln hangs above the mantle. During the holidays, the State Dining Room becomes a festive scene of mixed greenery and burgundy ribbon; the dining table is graced by large grapevine angels adorned with magnolia garland and ribbons.
One of the most popular White House decorations is showcased in the State Dining Room; it is the traditional gingerbread house created by the White House Pastry Chefs. This year, it is Santa's Victorian house and workshop, complete with Santa and his sleigh preparing to take flight from the rooftop. Due to the extremely large number of good boys and girls this year, Santa is on his cell phone to the President to ask permission for Socks, the Clinton family cat, to help distribute gifts. In the workshop, Santa's elves are hard at work, surrounded by Santa suits made of candy, marzipan and chocolate.