'Butter Man' explains how he's spreading joy after 'feud' with Al at parade

Donny Willis visited TODAY to talk about his viral run-ins with Al Roker at the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. "I just wanted to make people smile that day," the New York pastor said.

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/ Source: TODAY
By Scott Stump

He's the man, the myth, the margarine.

Pastor Donny Willis, 32, the man dressed as a stick of butter who got into a hilarious "feud" with Al Roker that lit up Twitter at the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, appeared on TODAY Wednesday to talk about how he helped spread cheer on the holiday.

"There's been so much love and positivity that's come out of this, it's been a blessing,'' Willis said. "Honestly, I just wanted to make people smile that day."

His relentless pursuit of Al during the parade resulted in moments that had people cracking up to start their holiday.

"Get out of here, you butter!" Al roared in one moment, which even had "Hamilton" star Lin-Manuel Miranda tweeting it out.

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"You butter believe I did,'' Al tweeted in response. "That guy is toast."

Willis, who is a pastor at Westchester Church in Valhalla, New York, got involved in the parade though a good friend who works for Macy's.

The father of three didn't know he was going to be dressed in that costume until the morning of the parade, but he took to the role like butter on toast.

"In the aftermath, I would say that one of the biggest lessons is embrace big moments like a hot potato,'' he said. "It's like enjoy it, enjoy the moment ... but at the end of the day, don't hold on to it so much that it becomes your identity because it's a singular moment, and it's not the totality of your life."

His daughter and two sons are all under 6, so they didn't fully grasp their father melting Twitter on Thanksgiving.

"They haven't figured out dad is going to be the most embarrassing thing in their life yet," he said.

He also plans on buttering up the crowd again next year.

"Twitter says I need to be there,'' he joked.

As for Al, he wanted it noted for the record that there is no actual feud with the butter man.

"I want people to make sure, there was no enmity,'' Al said on TODAY Wednesday. "Especially now that we know he's a man of the cloth. He's pastor-ized."