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as the title indicates I am trying to make a query for the post closest to today's date. I know this is a duplicate post but the ones I have found on the topic has not been able to solve my problem.

my code:

$args = array( 'type'=>'post', 'orderby'=>'name',
           'order'=>'ASC', 'taxonomy'=>'category' );
$categories = get_categories( $args );

foreach ( $categories as $cat ) {
$args = array( 'post_type'      => 'event',
               'numberposts'    => 1,
               'cat'            => $cat->cat_ID,
               'meta_key'       => '_date',
               'order'          => 'DESC',
               'order_by'       => 'meta_value',
               'no_found_rows'  => true,
               'meta_query'     => array(array(
                   'key'    => '_date',
                   'value'  => date('Ymd'),
                   'compare'=> '>=',
                   'type'   => 'NUMERIC'
               ))
              );
$query = new WP_Query( $args );

I have been looking to this post for help: Arrange Posts By Date In Order Of Closest To The Current Date

What works: The query does not return post's with a date that has passed.

What does not: The query will not order by the meta key '_date', I always end up with the most/least recently created post rather than what I am trying to achieve.

Any help is appreciated, thank you.

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The parameter should be orderby rather than order_by. (See codex)

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