Following significant backlash, former President Barack Obama has decided at the last minute to curtail plans for a massive 60th birthday celebration.
The party, scheduled to take place Saturday at the Obamas’ oceanside mansion in Martha’s Vineyard, was to include nearly 500 guests and more than 200 staff. But after news broke of the bash over the weekend, critics lambasted the former president for hosting a massive party amid a surge in coronavirus infections.
Now, citing the spread of the Delta variant, the Obamas have decided to scale down the party to include just family and close friends.
According to the New York Times, “the party plans had been months in the making and many invitees had already arrived on Martha’s Vineyard” when Obama belatedly announced news of its cancellation.
“Due to the new spread of the Delta variant over the past week, the president and Mrs. Obama have decided to significantly scale back the event to include only family and close friends,” the former president’s spokesperson, Hannah Hankins, said in a statement. “President Obama is appreciative of others sending their birthday wishes from afar and looks forward to seeing people soon.”
Hundreds of former Obama administration officials and Hollywood bigwigs were to attend the party before its downsizing. The New York Post reported that George Clooney, Steven Spielberg, and Oprah Winfrey were expected to attend.
Party planners reportedly followed public health guidelines in advance of the celebration. The bash was to be held outside at the property and the Obamas had asked guests to be vaccinated. There was even slated to be a “COVID coordinator” on the premises to ensure protocols were followed.
This is an excerpt from TheBlaze.
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