By Amie Parnes - 08/09/14 06:00 AM EDT
President Obama began a nearly two-week vacation on Saturday, when he and his family left Washington for Martha's Vineyard in Massachusetts.
The first family, which has spent nearly every summer on the Vineyard since Obama took office, will be staying in a seven-bedroom, 9-bathroom, 8,100-square-foot home they rented by the Vineyard Sound.
While the vacation will extend from Aug. 9-24th, Obama will return to Washington on Sunday, Aug. 17th through the 19th to attend meetings at the White House. After the two-day work trip, he will rejoin his family for the remainder of the vacation.
During his stay on Martha's Vineyard, Obama will also headline a campaign fundraiser for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, White House officials say. The fundraiser will be hosted by Roger Brown, the president of Berklee College of Music, and his wife Linda Mason, according to Democratic officials.
Obama has come under criticism by some for taking the vacation during several foreign crises. The U.S. on Friday launched airstrikes against Sunni militants in Iraq, which led some Democratic lawmakers to express concern that the United States will be dragged back into the Iraq war.
White House officials maintain that the job of the presidency goes with Obama wherever he is and he will have access to an array of communications equipment and continue to get briefed by his national security team and other aides on his trip.
“If there's a need for the president to return to the White House, it's not a long flight back,” White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said on Friday.
The president won't be the only high-profile visitor to the island. Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will also be making a brief stop there on Aug. 13, for a book signing at the Bunch of Grapes Bookstore.
Obama has vacationed in Martha's Vineyard every summer except in 2012 when he was campaigning for reelection. He usually spends his time there golfing, biking, and joining family and friends for dinners around the island.