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Obamas set to return to Hawaii for annual vacation

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    President Barack Obama eats shave ice with daughter Malia, at right, at Island Snow on Jan. 1, 2015, in Kailua during the Obama family vacation.

President Barack Obama and his family are scheduled to fly to Hawaii late next week for their annual Christmas vacation in the islands.

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest confirmed today that, unless events in Washington or elsewhere keep Obama at work, the first family will leave for Hawaii the night of Dec. 18.

No information was released on the arrival time, but motorists can expect freeway and road closures as the president’s motorcade travels to their rented vacation home in Kailua late that night or early morning on Dec. 19.

The Christmastime vacation in Hawaii is a tradition for the first family. Obama, who was born in Honolulu and spent much of his childhood on Oahu, has spent the holidays in the islands every year during his presidency and even before he was elected.

If this vacation is like the others, expect the president to spend several days golfing with Punahou School friends Bobby Titcomb, Mike Ramos and Greg Orme, along with selected White House staffers, and perhaps a family day at Pyramid Rock beach on Marine Corps Base Hawaii at Kaneohe Bay.

Past vacations have included a trip to Island Snow in Kailua for shave ice, at least one hike, and dinner at favorite fine-dining restaurants with Obama’s sister Maya Soetoro-Ng and her family.

Past Christmas Eves and New Year’s Eves have been spent at their rented Kailua home with family.

Also on Christmas Eve, First Lady Michelle Obama spends some time on the phone answering calls about Santa Claus’ trip around the world as tracked by NORAD.

On Christmas Day, the president and first lady have made it a tradition to spend time with service members and their families at Marine Corps Base Hawaii.

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