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Obama made a unexpected appearance in New York and the crowd went wild

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Just a month shy of out of office, former President Barack Obama made his first public appearance in New York on Friday, drawing large, screaming crowds as he exited a building on Fifth Avenue, first reported by Business Insider.

With some type of hot beverage in hand, the 44th president exited the building with a smile and a friendly wave before he entered a vehicle heavily guarded by secret service officers.

Barack Obama kite-surfs with Richard Branson on Necker Island. (Jack Brockway/Virgin)
Barack Obama kite-surfs with Richard Branson on Necker Island. (Jack Brockway/Virgin)

It's not clear why Obama was in New York, and a representative for the president's foundation declined to comment.  His public appearance followed a viral photo shared earlier this month that showed the president having a blast while kite surfing.

What's Next from Barack and Michelle Obama

The Obamas released a video on Jan. 20th announcing that they would be focusing on building "a living working center for citizenship" after leaving office. 


"More than a library or museum, it will be a living center for citizenship," Obama said. "That's why we want to hear from you. Tell us what you want this project to be and tell its what's on your mind."


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