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Irish Prime Minister's St. Patrick's Day White House celebration

President Barack Obama listens as Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny speaks during a St. Patrick's Day reception in the East Room of the White House during last year's visit. (Photo: Associated Press)
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WASHINGTON (AP) - St. Patrick's Day is coming early to the White House this year.

The official holiday falls on Monday. But Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny will be marking the occasion Friday during a series of events around Washington.

Kenny starts his day having breakfast with Joe Biden at the vice president's official residence. Then he'll meet with President Barack Obama in the Oval Office.

Later, the leaders plan to attend the annual St. Patrick's Day lunch at the U.S. Capitol. And in the evening, the Obamas plan a reception at the White House.

Kenny's annual St. Patrick's Day visits have become a tradition. Obama and Kenny will exchange shamrocks in a custom started under President Harry Truman.

Biden will meet separately Friday with Northern Ireland's leaders to discuss progress toward peace.

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