Celebrate Barack Obama Day on August 4

Official portrait of President Barack Obama in the Oval Office, Dec. 6, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Time to pull out those Obama t-shirts! Barack Obama Day refers to two days of recognition in the United States in honor of Barack Obama, who served as the 44th President of the United States from January 20, 2009 to January 20, 2017. The State of Illinois celebrates the commemorative holiday every August 4, which is Obama’s birthday, beginning in 2018. Obama was a member of the Illinois Senate from 1997 to 2004 and represented the state in the United States Senate from 2005 to 2008 before becoming US President. Similar to other commemorative holidays, it is not a legal state holiday, meaning workplaces are not closed on the day.

Barack Hussein Obama, II was born on August 4, 1961, at Kapiolani Medical Center for Women and Children in Honolulu, Hawai’i, the only president who was born outside of the contiguous 48 states, to a white mother, Ann Dunham (November 29, 1942 – November 7, 1995), and a black father, Barack Obama Sr. (June 18, 1936 – November 24, 1982).

How to Celebrate Barack Obama’s Birthday (in addition to wearing Obama t-shirts and other gear) : Do some community service; check out his speeches; read his book, Dreams from My Father, an international bestseller that tells the story of his childhood in Hawaii and Indonesia, and his path to Harvard Law School and into politics.

Why we love Barack and should celebrate Obama’s birthday: his election was historic; he turned the economy around; and he tackled health care. (Not to mention his brilliance, charm, epic swagger and fantastic wife and daughters.)

Other holidays observed on August 4 include National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day, National Friendship Day, National Sisters Day, and U.S. Coast Guard Birthday.

There are two other holidays dedicated to our extraordinary former Commander-in-Chief, one in Alabama and another in Kenya.

Perry County, Alabama, has celebrated the second Monday of November as Barack Obama Day since 2009. County offices and schools are closed for the holiday there. The Barack Obama Day in Perry County, Alabama holiday is meant to highlight his victory as a way to give people faith that difficult goals can be achieved. In the rural county, which overwhelmingly supported Obama presidential election, Commissioners passed a measure that would close county offices for the annual holiday and its roughly 40 workers get a paid day off. Perry County has 12,000 residents, most of them black. Voters there backed Obama by over 70 percent in a state that gave 60 percent of the overall vote to Republican John McCain based largely on strong support from white voters. In 2019 Barack Obama Day in Perry County, Alabama in USA falls on November 11.

Obama Day is a holiday in Kenya, first celebrated in November, 2008 in honor of Barack Obama’s victory in the 2008 United States presidential election. Shortly after the U.S. election result was announced, Kenyan president Mwai Kibaki declared the holiday, because Obama’s father, Barack Obama, Sr., was Kenyan. Obama Day is still celebrated annually on November 6 in Kenya.