George Washington’s 290th birthday celebrated at Mount Vernon estate

George Washington is turning 290, and the caretakers of his Mount Vernon, Virginia, estate are throwing a house party.

Several activities to commemorate the first president’s birthday will be held on Presidents Day, with an in-person celebration Monday and a virtual celebration Tuesday.

“We open the estate for free both those days, and we’re going to be having great demonstrations from the commander and chief’s guard,” said Matt Briney, Mount Vernon’s vice president of media and communications.

Some activities include a demonstration of how to make hoecakes — Washington’s favorite breakfast item — and kid-friendly activities.

“On the 22nd, we’re hosting a virtual celebration for those who can’t join us in person at 7p.m.,” said Briney. Capacity restrictions will be in effect for the in-person activities, so he recommends that people register in advance.

Washington’s birthday is one of the biggest celebrations at the estate, the first being the Fourth of July, according to Briney.

“Bundle up — it’ll be cold. But we love seeing people out,” Briney said.

The pandemic caused Mount Vernon to greatly reduce last year’s celebration, but a new tradition came out of it.

“Last year, we did have a greatly reduced admission those days and so the celebration wasn’t as big as we are expecting this year,” said Briney. “But we did have our first annual virtual celebration on Washington’s birthday, [which is on] the 22nd, so that’s a tradition we are continuing again this year.”

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