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Obama Leaves Early for 17-Day Vacation

A photograph of President Barack Obama, top, is attached to a shelf near hats and souvenir clothing in a shop, Aug. 6, 2015, in Oak Bluffs, Mass., on the island of Martha's Vineyard.

U.S. President Barack Obama and his family return to Martha's Vineyard in Massachusetts Friday for a vacation in which he is likely to spend time playing golf.

No official public events are on the agenda as President Obama, his wife Michelle and daughters Malia and Sasha spend more than two weeks vacationing on the resort island, according to officials.

In the past, the president and his family have been spotted going on bicycle rides and dining out at restaurants on Martha's Vineyard.

The Obamas were originally scheduled to leave Washington Saturday, but the trip was moved up by a day, with multiple news agencies reporting that they aren't expected to return until Aug. 23.

Interruptions possible

The president is traveling with a group of aides who will brief him on national and international events.

Although he is taking a break from Washington, Obama has had to interrupt his vacation in the past because of domestic and international events.

Last year, he addressed the nation from Martha's Vineyard regarding clashes between protesters and police in the U.S. city of Ferguson, Missouri, U.S. military action in Iraq and the beheading of U.S. journalist James Foley by the Islamic State militant group. He also returned to Washington briefly for meetings.

The president has been to Martha's Vineyard several times, skipping 2012 when he was up for re-election.

The Obamas are expected to return to Washington in late August.