Taking a break from the Big Apple! Kelly Ripa is escaping New York City after her Live With Kelly and Michael cohost, Michael Strahan, announced on Tuesday, April 19, that he is leaving the show and joining Good Morning America. A source reveals to Us Weekly exclusively that Ripa — who took the day off on Wednesday — had already planned a getaway with her husband, Mark Consuelos.
“This was Kelly and Mark’s 20th anniversary trip,” the insider tells Us. “And it was planned for months.”
A show rep confirms to Us that Ripa had already planned the vacation. “On tomorrow’s Live With Kelly and Michael, Erin Andrews will guest cohost with Michael Strahan. Friday’s show — which already was scheduled to pretape on Thursday — also will be cohosted by Andrews,” the spokesperson tells Us. “Kelly Ripa will be out on Friday and Monday for a previously scheduled vacation.”
Back in Manhattan, Ripa’s cohost chair was filled by actress Ana Gasteyer on Wednesday, the morning after Strahan’s departure was confirmed. A show source told Us that Ripa had taken a “sick day.” A rep for the show added: “Kelly had today off from the show.”
Despite Ripa’s absence on Wednesday, the man of the moment, Strahan, graciously thanked his work wife on Live on Wednesday.
“Kelly welcomed me here, and I’ve learned so much from her, and she’s just been an amazing influence on me,” the former NFL player, 44, said on Wednesday. “And this has truly changed my life to be here with her. And I know that the show will continue to be strong and great, because with Kelly and Michael Gelman and the staff — everybody here is so talented, and this show has not been around for over 30 years by mistake. Kelly, I thank you. I love you. And everyone else here at Live.”
Ripa recently celebrated her 15th anniversary on Live. Strahan replaced longtime Live host Regis Philbin in 2012 after a 10-month search.
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