Alicia Vitarelli talks to Rachael Ray ahead of 2,000th episode

NEW YORK CITY (WPVI) -- Thursday is pretty big day for our friend Rachael Ray. Her 2,000th episode is packed full of surprises and we got a sneak peek at the taping in New York City.

It's an hour full of emotion as some pretty big names came to help celebrate this milestone. One of them is the woman credited with sparking her career.

"Oprah introduced me! Whose life is that?! Shut up!" joked Rachael.

You might call her Rachael Ray's fairy godmother and just as she was on day one, Oprah was back to celebrate episode number 2000.

"When Oprah tells you you can do something, you believe you can do something," said Rachael.

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Watch Alicia Vitarelli's full interview with Rachael Ray in the player above.

This real life fairy tale started in 2005 when Oprah first brought the 30 minute meals star on her talk show.

During a commercial break, Rachael recalls what Oprah leaned in and told her.

"She leaned in to me and said: 'You've got 'it' - I almost threw up on Oprah," she said.

The very next year, Rachael Ray got her very own show here on 6abc.

And on Thursday, her 2000th episode is pretty much one big party with all the feels and all kinds of tears - mostly happy ones.

"My cheeks hurt so much, I was smiling so much and I am so freaked out I think i am going to go home and cry later," said Rachael.

At every turn, celebrities are surprising Rachael to toast this major TV milestone.

"There's hot guys, there's icons, there's Oprah - it's insane!" said Rachael.

She even got a special serenade from the legendary Tony Bennett and an anniversary cake from the cake boss himself, Buddy Valastro.

Valastro says he is kind of like a kindred spirit with Rachel since they both came from humble beginnings.

"When you hear her story I think it's all the same - hard work, passion, family, working hard, believing in yourself," he said.

The one and only Emeril Lagasse is even taking over the kitchen with a surprise dish.

"She's very humble, but so hardworking and extremely dedicated to what she's doing and I'm happy to celebrate with her and bring a little bam," said Emeril.

You can watch Rachael Ray's 2,000th episode with her special co-host Oprah Thursday, October 26 at 10 a.m. right here on 6abc.

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