The day began with a gun salute to mark the hour of Atatürk's arrival in Samsun, and events continued throughout the day nationwide, at Turkish embassies around the globe and in the KKTC.
Politicians and statesmen came out to Anıtkabir, Atatürk's mausoleum, led by President Abdullah Gül. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Constitutional Court President Haşim Kılıç, Chief of General Staff Gen. Işık Koşaner, Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu and members of the Cabinet and other politicians attended the ceremony at Anıtkabir. Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahçeli, whose party is passing through difficult times with the release of sex videos involving top party officials, was not present.
Gül laid a wreath of red and white carnations in front of Atatürk's tomb, followed by a minute of silence and the singing of the national anthem.
Signing the Anıtkabir Guestbook, Gül wrote that Turkey is moving forward, strengthened by Atatürk's ideals.
“Turkey, which is a rising self-confident country, spreads the idea of stability to the world and acts as a source of inspiration for others thanks to its unique characteristics and values. Our country's remarkable successes show that we will achieve your ideals. Turkish youth constitute the most important source of our confidence and they are determined to glorify their country in every platform and carry it to the future in the strongest way,” the president wrote.
Gül later proceeded to the ceremony held at Ankara's 19 Mayıs Stadium. Prime Minister Erdoğan was unable to attend the ceremony due to health problems.
A series of ceremonies were held in İstanbul and the Black Sea province of Samsun as well.
The governor and mayor of İstanbul, representatives of political parties and private citizens attended the ceremony in İstanbul's Taksim Square, while Turkish Public Works and Settlement Minister Mustafa Demir participated in the ceremony in Samsun, the city from which Atatürk started the War of Independence.
Celebrations had to be cancelled in a number of provinces due to bad weather.