President Obama arrived on the Vineyard late Saturday afternoon to begin an eight-day summer vacation with his family.
Marine One touched down at the Martha’s Vineyard Airport just before 4 p.m. carrying President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama. Two Osprey MV-22 helicopters landed ahead of time with staff and press. The president and First Lady left Marine One and boarded a black car.
Two white mesh bags full of basketballs were unloaded from one of the Osprey, and first dog Bo also traveled on an Osprey. He waited patiently on the tarmac with a handler.
The Obama's daughters were not with them and reportedly have not arrived yet.
In advance of the arrival a group of onlookers waited at the Martha’s Vineyard Airport. Linda Gaines and Dee Marshall have been at the airport for all of Mr. Obama’s arrivals on the Vineyard.
“I never miss an opportunity to welcome him to the Island, never,” said Ms. Gaines, a seasonal Oak Bluffs resident.
A West Tisbury police officer walking the perimeter of the security gate advised onlookers to be careful of poison ivy underfoot.
On the West Tisbury Road, Jim Graham and his family were having a picnic in a grassy area by the roadside. Settled into their beach chairs, they said they had decided to make a day of it.
At 4 p.m. a long motorcade of about 20 cars headed up-Island, with passing bystanders taking pictures on the Edgartown-West Tisbury Road and a large crowd waiting outside Alley’s General Store.
Extra security was in evidence at Alley’s, where Secret Service were checking cars with labradors and keeping the crowd behind orange cones.
Finn Camper, 12, a seasonal resident of Aquinnah and year-round resident of Chevy Chase, Md., was waiting with his family. A self-described Obama diehard supporter, Finn said he saw the president from the same spot two years ago. “The president causes a humongous disruption but we’re glad they’re here anyway,” Finn said. As the motorcade passed, his sister Alida, age nine, said: “I think I might have seen him but it might have been a decoy.”
By late Saturday afternoon Obamas were in for the night at their rented homed off South Road in Chilmark.
They will stay until August 18. No public events are planned.
Air Force One touched down at Coast Guard Air Station Cape Cod in Bourne at 3.24 p.m. Saturday.
Earlier in the day Mr. Obama addressed a conventon of disabled American veterans in Orlando, Fla. About the presidential vacation, press secretary Jay Carney said Mr. Obama “is looking forward very much to some downtime with his family” and planned to see some friends. There were hints of an outing to a book store for vacation reading.
By the time Air Force One landed on the Cape, the president had changed into vacation-wear, beige khakis and a gray-blue shirt with rolled sleeves. Mrs. Obama wore a yellow and white sundress and beige flats.
Sara Brown, Remy Tumin and Oliva Hull contributed reporting.
For more updates on the First Family's visit to Martha's Vineyard, see our blog: Live Updates: President Obama on Martha's Vineyard. For more photos of the arrival, see the gallery Martha's Vineyard Welcomes President Obama to Island.