National Days in November

There are more national days of celebration and remembrance in November than Veterans Day and Thanksgiving. It comes as no surprise to me whatsoever that November 18, my half birthday, is National Princess Day. Here are some other days you can celebrate throughout the month:

November 1 is National Author’s Day, Family Literacy Day, & Stress Awareness Day

November 2 is National Sandwich Day

November 4 is National Candy Day

November 5 is National Doughnut Day, National Love Your Red Hair Day, & Daylight Saving Time Ends

November 6 is National Nachos Day

November 8 is National Cappuccino Day

November 11 is Veterans Day

November 12 is National Chicken Soup for the Soul Day

November 13 is World Kindness Day

November 14 is National Pickle Day

November 15 is National America Recycles Day & National Clean Out Your Refrigerator Day

November 16 is Great American Smokeout & National Fast Food Day

November 17 is National Take a Hike Day

November 18 is National Adoption Day & Mickey Mouse’s 89th Birthday

November 21 is National Stuffing Day

November 22 is National Cranberry Relish Day

November 23 is Thanksgiving Day & National Day of Mourning

November 24 is National Native American Heritage Day, National Day of Listening, & Black Friday

November 25 is Small Business Saturday

November 26 is National Cake Day & National Cookie Day

November 27 is Cyber Monday

November 28 is National French Toast Day & National Day of Giving

And November 29 is the tree lighting at Rockefeller Center in New York, which basically means that it’s time for Christmas. So it’s time to get out your tree and start decorating!

National Days in September

September is the month when the air starts to turn brisk in the mornings, giving you a small taste for Fall, but by the afternoon, it’s sweltering again. Monday, September 4 is Labor Day, where most business (including the Aurora Public Library District) will be closed. But what about the other National Holidays taking place in September?

September 2: National Tailgating Day & National College Colors Day

September 4: National Wildlife Day & Labor Day

September 5: National Cheese Pizza Day

September 6: National Read a Book Day

September 8: National Stand Up to Cancer Day

September 9: National Hug Your Boss Day

September 11: Patriot Day & National Day of Service and Remembrance

September 12: National Day of Encouragement & National Chocolate Milkshake Day

September 13: National Peanut Butter Day

September 15: National Online Learning Day

September 16: National Step-Family Day & National Working Parents Day

September 17: National Wife Appreciation Day

September 19: National Talk Like a Pirate Day & National IT Professionals Day

September 22: First Day of Autumn

September 23: National Singles Day & National Family Health and Fitness Day

September 24: National Punctuation Day

September 25: National Comic Book Day

September 26: National Pancake Day & National Voter Registration Day

September 28: National Good Neighbor Day

September 29: National Coffee Day

September 30: National Ghost Hunting Day

Click on the underlined links to brows our collection on these different topics! Enjoy these days!

This is Halloween History Part 1

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The tradition of Halloween began roughly 2000 years ago in the regions of what is now the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Northern France by a group of people called the Celts. The Celts celebrated their New Year on November 1, but on October 31, they celebrated the festival of Samhain. The Celts believed that the night before the New Year, the lines of the physical world and the spiritual world were blurred which made it easier for the dead to come back to earth as spirits. During Samhain, the Celts would dress up in animal heads, skins, masks, and other costumes to confuse and make themselves unrecognizable to the spirits returning to the earth.

Fast forward to 43 A.D., when the Romans were in control of the civilized world. The Roman festival of Feralia, which was celebrated in late October to honor the passing of their dead, and the festival honoring Pomona, the Roman goddess of fruit and trees, were combined with Samhain. It is believed that the tradition of bobbing for apples was created around this time, as Pomona’s sacred symbol was the apple.

On May 13, 609 A.D. Pope Boniface IV dedicated the Pantheon in Rome to honor Christian martyrs, which established the Catholic feast of All Martyrs Day. This holiday was later moved back to November 1 and went on to include all of the saints, changing the name to All Saints Day. On this day, the poor would go house to house, begging for food and money. People would give out Soul Cakes to the poor in return for a prayer for dead loved ones. This practice was eventually taken up by children, who started to dress up and play pranks on people who would not give them food or money, which is how trick-or-treating got its start.

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In 1000 A.D., the Catholic church made November 2 All Souls Day to honor all of the dead. Since All Souls Day was often called All-Hallows, the night before was deemed All-Hallows Eve, which eventually morphed into Halloween. Some practices from Samhain still lingered, such as costumes, parades, and bonfires, but since the holiday was now church-sanctioned, pagan practices were often overlooked in celebration.

Centuries later in colonial America, Halloween was typically celebrated by the southern colonies by those mostly of Western European descent. Customs of different European ethnic groups intermingled with those of the Native Americans. The first few Halloweens celebrated on American soil were typically public events held to celebrate the harvest. Neighbors would share creative and imaginative tales of the dead and tell fortunes.

By the middle of the nineteenth-century, annual autumn festivities were common, but Halloween was not yet widely celebrated. Irish and Scottish immigrants fleeing the potato famine settled in America and brought their deeply rooted traditions of Halloween with them…

For the rest of the history of Halloween, be sure to check out Ashton’s blog post, “This is Halloween History Part 2!” It will post later this week.

To learn more about Halloween, make sure you check out our Online Resources. Happy Halloween!

National Holidays in October

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Did you know that there is at least one national holiday for every day of the year in America, and sometimes there are several holidays on the same day? Just think how much celebrating we’ve been missing out on by only observing the “big” national holidays, like Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day! In October alone, there are fun holidays like Be Bald and Be Free Day, whatever that means, (October 14) and National Bologna Day (October 24) to celebrate. Here is just a small sample of obscure holidays the Library can help you celebrate this month:

October 1 National Vegetarian Day
October 9Leif Eriksson Day
October 10Columbus Day
October 15Sweetest Day
October 16National Dictionary Day
October 22National Make a Difference Day
October 26National Pumpkin Day
October 29National Cat Day
October 30National Candy Corn Day
October 31Halloween

Be sure to check out our catalog or stop in to see how the Library can help you celebrate these holidays and any others you might find on www.nationaldaycalendar.com.