The company, based in Oak Brook, Ill., says it is making a concerted effort to add staff as its business improves and as more of its restaurants stay open 24 hours a day.
McDonald's is hiring restaurant crew and management for full-time and part-time positions. The company's hiring goal translates to between three and four new hires per restaurant.
"Our business is strong, IT has been for the last several years. The business continues to grow and we need good people to satisfy our customers," said Jim Norberg, senior VP, McDonalds.
The company is hoping to maximize publicity and marketing from the hiring program and also improve the perception some people have of working at McDonald's.
Some employment experts say many potential employees are drawn to companies like Starbucks where they see better longterm opportunities. But advisors at CareerBuilder.com say that's a misperception.
"Getting in the door and getting a job, even if it's an internship, is really a good step to consider because it will set you up for years to come," said Rosemary Haefner, CareerBuilder.com
"If I can work at McDonald's, I mean why not? It's always good to have a job. A job is very important," said Lee Jones.
Norberg began his career at as a crew member at McDonald's 30 years ago making French fries. He says nearly a third of senior management came up through the ranks.
"Over 50 percent of our franchisees started in the restaurants. Forty percent of our senior leadership started in the restaurants. So this is really about promoting the great opportunities at McDonald's," said Norberg.
McDonald's held a similar event in its Western region last year. More than 60,000 people applied for the 13,000 positions.
According to McDonald's, the company is hiring at all levels. Although the majority of jobs will be minimum wage entry level, McDonald's says it is also looking for store managers and corporate jobs.
Those who are interested can apply in stores or online. Some restaurants will hold events and interviews that day.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.