Suddenly, Vladimir Putin’s 60th birthday has become the biggest and hottest talking point for the Russian press.

On his birthday, the president traditionally disappears from public view and spends the day with his family. But this year, on Oct. 7, several cities will stage rallies, concerts and exhibitions in honor of the country’s leader. For its part, the opposition is planning a series of events, including a flash mob under the slogan “Let grandpa retire.”

Russia Beyond the Headlines has put together a small biography of the Russian leader, from schoolboy to presidential fighter pilot. View his timeline below.

Putin turns 60 on Dipity.