Biden, family attend Christmas tree lighting on Nantucket

NANTUCKET, Mass. (AP) — The Biden family’s tradition of lunching, shopping and watching a Christmas tree light up in downtown Nantucket on Friday was mostly about keeping the president’s 2-year-old grandson from having a meltdown.

There was President Joe Biden’s daughter, Ashley, who danced and clapped with nephew Beau to “Jingle Bell Rock” to keep him entertained as they waited with the crowd gathered for the 48th annual tree lighting ceremony on Main St.

There, Beau sat on the shoulders of his father, Hunter Biden.

There was Beau being carried by his father, then not being carried by his father, and seemed to be saying things that indicated he wanted to get out of the cold and intermittent heavy rain.

Beau’s grandfather went with him at various points.

Each member of the family appeared to do what they could to keep blonde Beau, named after his late uncle, happy for a few hours until the tree was lit.

The Bidens have a more than 40-year tradition of spending Thanksgiving on Nantucket, an island off the coast of Massachusetts.

The next day they go out for lunch – this year they ate at the Brotherhood of Thieves restaurant. Afterwards, they hit Nantucket Bookworks, a nearby bookstore. The president arrived with his purchases in a reusable tote bag.

They meandered along downtown Nantucket’s cobblestone streets, entering some shops and window shopping in others. The First Lady and Ashley had done some of their shopping earlier Friday, so the post-lunch trip was mostly for the President.

Biden spent time at a leather goods store and a pet store, among other businesses. At one point he looked through the window of a lingerie shop but did not go inside.

“We are grateful for you,” someone shouted to the president.

The tree lighting ceremony proceeded with little trouble. The red, green and blue lights on the tree did not turn on after a countdown from 10.

The high school a capella choir came out to sing until the problem was solved and the tree was lit, ushering in the Christmas season in Nantucket.

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