365体育官网The West Bridgewater girl is one of the estimated 187,000 people in America who were born on a leap day.
365体育官网WEST BRIDGEWATER — Saturday will mark another year for Sarah Spadea's youngest daughter, Samantha. But technically, this is only the third time in her lifetime that she will celebrate her birthday.
Samantha was born February 29, 2008, on a leap day, the calendar phenomenon that happens every four years.
365体育官网"We like to tell everyone she's three because she's our baby," Spadea said.
365体育官网Her daughter is one of the estimated 187,000 people in America who were born on a leap day.We can deliver news just like this directly to your inbox. You can sign up for This Just In (a daily 7:30 p.m. newsletter with items we've posted that day), News Alerts (so you don't miss anything important) and more. It's customized to your preferences -- and it'll only take a few seconds.
Leap days are observed because of the time it takes for the Earth to orbit around the Sun. A rotation takes about six hours longer than the 365 days in a year, so a leap day helps realign the calendar with the Earth's position. Without the extra day, the seasons would occur later in the calendar.
365体育官网Spadea recalls that February 29 wasn't her daughter's due date. Doctors at Signature Healthcare Brockton Hospital induced labor and Samantha arrived around 11:45 p.m. — just in time before the leap day ended, Spadea said.
365体育官网When it's a leap year, the family throws a special birthday party for Samantha.
365体育官网"On leap years, we go all out," Spadea said.
For non-leap years, the family celebrates Samantha's birthday at the end of February.
365体育官网Around the South Shore, residents will commemorate leap day in several other ways.
The town of Holbrook was founded on February 29, 1872. Town Administrator Tim Gordon said he thinks residents enjoy having a special birthday.
"I think it's kind of unique," he said. "Anytime you can be a small town and have something unique, it's kind of cool."
This year, the town will have a birthday party at 1 p.m. at Holbrook Middle-High School with festivities including a slideshow about the town's history, skits, vocal performances and cake.
Kelly Young and Austin Morrison, of Plymouth, have birthdays around Feb. 29, which factored into their decision to get married on this year's leap day.
"It was almost a joke for the first couple of times we said it, and then we just became dead set on it," Morrison said.
The odd wedding date has become the source of bad jokes for them and their families, they said, but even more, the couple wanted to get married on a special day like the leap day.
"It gives us a unique opportunity to be able to have our own special day that we don't share with as many people," Young said.
365体育官网"Everybody gets an extra day every four years," Morrison added, "but this way our extra day will always be for each other, forever and always."
365体育官网Material from The Patriot Ledger was used in this report. Staff writer Mina Corpuz can be reached at email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @mlcorpuz.