Vancouver 'leap day baby' celebrates 15th birthday by turning 60

Peter Brouwer is celebrating his birthday for just the 15th time today, even as he turns 60-years-old. The Vancouver man was born on Feb. 29, 1956, and can only mark his actual birthday once every four years.

Peter Brouwer was born Feb. 29, 1956

Peter Brouwer is co-founder of the Honor Society of Leap Year Day Babies (Peter Brouwer)

Peter Brouwer is celebrating his birthday for just the 15th time today, even as he turns 60 years old. 

Brouwer hasn't been skipping his parties. Rather, the Vancouver resident was born on Feb. 29, 1956, and can only mark the actual day of his birth once every four years. 

He says there is an upside to being a leap-day baby, even as many born on that day rue missing out on childhood celebrations and having to explain their birthday to confused strangers.

"There's a sense that kids born on the 29th don't get as happy a life because they don't get a birthday every year," he said. "We just don't think that way. We think 'oh boy we got a birthday coming this year' and it's just exciting like when we were kids."

Brouwer is the co-founder of the Honor Society of Leap Year Day Babies. It aims to celebrate and link its 11,000 worldwide members that share the rare birthday. 

"When our birthday does come around we don't really remember our last birthday. We don't have that sense of time passing by like for regular people," he said. 

Every fourth year, an extra day is added to February because the Earth travels around the sun once every 365.24 days.

An estimated five million people have Feb. 29 birthdays, with a number of notable Canadians among them including mixed martial artist Patrick Cote as well as retired Montreal Canadiens captain Henri (Pocket Rocket) Richard and current Carolina Hurricanes goaltender Cam Ward.


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