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Obama Celebrates Birthday in Private, Star-Studded Party

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza(WASHINGTON) -- White House officials offered no details about the Rose Garden barbecue and birthday party thrown for President Obama on Thursday night.  No menu, no guest list, the event did not appear on his official schedule.

ABC’s Ann Compton reports that the Obama family paid for the celebration out of its own pocket.

“Just left the Presidents birthday party at the White House. Herbie Hancock played, Stevie Wonder sang and yes they did the electric slide. A great night,” comedian Chris Rock tweeted.

Other tidbits of the fete have trickled out from the blog ObamaFoodorama and Politico’s Jennifer Epstein.

Rock joined other celebrities such as Tom Hanks, Jay-Z, Charles Barkley, Steve Harvey and Grant Hill, as well as the Rev. Al Sharpton, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, White House chief of staff Bill Daley, senior adviser David Plouffe, political advisers David Axelrod and Robert Gibbs, Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel, Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, and more.

The menu included barbecue chicken, ribs, hamburgers and hot dogs, pasta, and salad. The president loves pie, so last night he had a choice of apple, cherry, huckleberry and/or peach.

After the first lady and daughters Sasha and Malia gave the president a cake, the festivities moved into the East Room where Hancock and Stevie Wonder performed, and a DJ spun tunes.

This was at least the fourth celebration of the president turning 50. In addition to the Rose Garden barbecue, his reelection campaign threw both small and large-ticket parties/fundraisers for the president in Chicago on the eve of his birthday. Aides feted him in the Blue Room at noon on his birthday.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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