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Michael Jackson's Family Celebrates King Of Pop's Birthday In Gary

By Samantha Abernethy in Arts & Entertainment on Aug 30, 2012 4:00PM

Michael Jackson's family and fans are celebrating the King of Pop's 54th birthday with a big party in Gary, Ind. Michael Jackson's mother Katherine worked with Gary Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson to put together "Goin' Back to Indiana: Can You Feel It?", a four-day celebration that they hope will become an annual event. The guests of honor are Jackson's children Prince, Paris and Blanket. They also recently stopped by Six Flags Great America, too, but the kids seemed wary of all of the attention.

The Sun-Times writes:

After sitting outside in an SUV for about an hour, Jackson’s two oldest children, Prince and Paris, finally came out to accept T-shirts and buttons from Gary Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson.

Jackson’s youngest son, Blanket, and his mother, Katherine Jackson, stayed in the SUV, however.

Freeman-Wilson sat in the SUV with the family for a little while and said afterward that she was reassuring the family that the city would honor their wishes.

“The kids are still shy,” the mayor said. “They didn’t grow up in the spotlight.”

Is it just us, or does that sound like maybe the Jacksons are pushing children into the spotlight, just like the good old days?

The celebration started yesterday with a candlelight tribute ceremony. Today Prince, Paris and Blanket will throw out the first pitch at a minor league baseball game: The Gary SouthShore RailCats vs. the St. Paul Saints. Then on Friday, Katherine Jackson will be recognized by the City of Gary and the Chamber of Commerce at a special dinner.

Saturday is the big night with the "Goin’ Back to Indiana: Can You Feel It Tribute Concert." Can't make it to Gary? Well, the event will also be streaming live online.