For years, Ellie Karr looked ahead to her high school graduation and knew exactly how she would celebrate it — with an adventure-packed trip to New York City.
She’d visit the Statue of Liberty, catch some Broadway musicals, like her personal favorite, “Hamilton,” and maybe, as a TODAY superfan, she’d even stop by Rockefeller Center to see where her favorite morning show happens.
However, like many people’s big pre-pandemic plans, the Texas teen’s senior trip became a missed milestone last year. And when we heard about that, we started making plans of our own to make up for it with an even bigger NYC adventure.
First TODAY surprised Ellie when anchor Savannah Guthrie greeted her via video call and invited her to see all those things she missed — and more! Then, this summer, we brought Ellie, along with her mother Lisa Brodie, out to see the Big Apple up close.
With the help of our friends at “Hamilton,” Ellie not only got to see the beloved Broadway megahit and got a personal message from creator and former star Lin-Manuel Miranda, but she also had the chance to meet the women who play her favorite characters, the Schuyler sisters.
And when Ellie told the talented ladies that “Helpless” was her most loved song from the show, they belted out an abbreviated personal performance that would thrill any fan.
Mom Lisa confirmed, “Yes, this is the trip of her dreams.”
But the dream wasn’t over yet.
The class of 2020 graduate met Savannah in person and took a closer look at Rockefeller Center. Then she had the chance to get a fantastic view of the city from the Top of the Rock observation deck.
Of course, Ellie also got that glimpse of Lady Liberty that she always wanted.
And on Friday morning, the TODAY team got a treat, too, when Ellie and Lisa stopped by Studio 1A and paid a visit to the show.
That’s when Ellie caught up with Savannah again, who asked her about her favorite part of her NYC trip.
“I liked everything!” Ellie beamed. “Thank you so much!”