Leaping into a special birthday

Mark Halmai will see his fourth birthday tomorrow - even though he's only 12 years. You see he was born on a leap year.
Mark Halmai will see his fourth birthday tomorrow - even though he's only 12 years. You see he was born on a leap year. John Gass

OFFICIALLY, Mark Halmai has seen just three birthdays.

So the fact that he is excelling in Year 6 at school is a mammoth achievement.

One could say he's taken a giant "leap" forward.

The Tweed Valley Adventist College student was born on February 29 - a leap year.

And while Mark has been around for 12 years, he can only celebrate his actual birthday every four years.

"It can be very annoying sometimes," he said.

"Especially when your brothers tease you about being three years old.

"But it's also pretty cool.

"Especially when you school friends throw a party for you."

That's exactly what will happen tomorrow after school.

"It's something of a novelty," class teacher Andrew Lawson said.

"We've never had a kid at the college who was born on February 29.

"The students really wanted to throw him a party.

"They have been making decorations and pinatas to decorate the classroom."

They have even made a "Pin the Nose on the Clown" game using a picture of Mark's face as the clown.

"It's kind of nice that they are making such a fuss about my birthday," Mark said.

"I normally celebrate my birthday on March 1 if it's not a leap year."

Mark is special to be born at the turn of the century, the new millennium and on February 29.

"He's a great kid, too," Mr Lawson said.

Topics:  leap year

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