Calendar

Apr
26
Thu
Pretzel Day
Apr 26 all-day

Celebrate the doughy, salty snack called Pretzel on April 26, Pretzel Day.

Be Humble Day Heritage Church Celebrate the delicious snack that is the pretzel. ©iStockphoto.com/Electra-K-Vasileiadou

Be Humble Day Heritage Church Celebrate the delicious snack that is the pretzel.

Considered to be one of the oldest surviving snacks in the world, the humble but delicious pretzel is thought to have originated in Europe, possibly created by monks in monasteries.

Soft or Hard

The knot shape of the traditional soft dough pretzels are thought to signify folded hands during prayers.

The commonly found hard pretzels are a much more recent invention. They are considered to have been first made by German immigrants in Pennsylvania, United States.

How to Celebrate?

  • Celebrate pretzel day by making your own pretzels at home. Try new flavors of pretzels.
  • If you don’t have time to make your own, visit your local pretzel store. Chances are, they will be celebrating the day by giving away free pretzels.

Did You Know…

…that Pennsylvanians eat more pretzels per capita than people in any other state in the United States? Because of this, Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell declared April 26 as National Pretzel Day in 2003.

Apr
27
Fri
Soup’s On @ St Stephen's Memorial Hall
Apr 27 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

St Stephen’s Memorial Hall

hospitality-soups on-heritage

Apr
29
Sun
The Lord’s Day
Apr 29 all-day

The Lord’s Day in Christianity is generally Sunday, the principal day of communal worship.

the-lord's-day-fun-heritageIt is observed by most Christians as the weekly memorial of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, who is said in the canonical Gospels to have been witnessed alive from the dead early on the first day of the week. According to some sources, Christians held worship on Sunday in the 1st century.

How to Celebrate?

  • Attend a Church service. Stay for the meet and greet following.
  • Say a prayer for the first person comes to mind.
  • Resolve to be a kinder person.

Did You Know…

… The earliest Biblical example of Christians meeting together on a Sunday for the purpose of “breaking bread” and preaching is cited in the New Testament book The Acts of the Apostles chapter 20 and verse 7 (Acts 20:7).

May
1
Tue
Macaroon Day
May 1 all-day

May 31 is Macaroon day, a day to celebrate the unleavened cakes or cookies made of egg whites, sugar, and almond paste or coconut.

Macroon-Day-Church Try your hands at baking a batch of delicious macaroon cookies on May 31, Macaroon Day. ©iStockphoto.com/ajafotoTry your hands at baking a batch of delicious macaroon cookies on May 31, Macaroon Day. ©iStockphoto.com/ajafoto

Try your hands at baking a batch of delicious macaroon cookies on May 31, Macaroon Day.

Macaroons are thought to have originated in the 9th century in Italy.

Coconut and Egg Whites

The original macaroon recipe called for egg whites, sugar, and almond paste. In many parts of the world, including the United Kingdom, coconut is used as the main ingredient of these delicious cakes, instead of almond paste. They can also be topped with jam, chocolate, or fruits in syrup.

Even though macaroons look like cookies, bakers technically classify them as cakes because they do not contain any flour.

Not a Macaron

Oftentimes, macaroons are confused with with the colorful macaron. While a macaron is made of similar ingredients – almond flour, egg whites and sugar, there is a world of difference in the taste, texture, and presentation of the two treats.

How to Celebrate?

  • Learn how to make macaroons. Whip up a batch and share them with your family and friends.
  • Try different variations of the cake, perhaps by adding fruit or chocolate? Or maybe a spice like cinnamon or cardamom?

Did You Know…

…that the word macaroon comes from the Italian word maccarone, meaning paste?

May
2
Wed
My Bucket’s Got a Hole Day
May 2 all-day

May 30 is My Bucket’s Got A Hole in It Day, a day to carry around a bucket with a hole with you.

My-Buckets-Got-A-Hole-Day-Church Get yourself a bucket and make a hole in it. ©iStockphoto.com/AnitaPatterson

Get yourself a bucket and make a hole in it.

It is unclear if the unofficial holiday was created in honor of the song by the same name made popular by American singer Hank Williams or to celebrate buckets with holes in them. Either way, see below on how to celebrate this offbeat hole-i-day.

How to Celebrate?

  • Listen to the song by the same name.
  • Trick someone by making a hole in their bucket. Ask them to do something silly with the bucket, like fill another bucket or water the lawn.
  • Ask people you meet the answer to the Hole in the Bucket puzzle: I am weightless, but you can see me. Put me in a bucket, and i’ll make it lighter. What am i? A hole.

Did You Know…

…that the children’s song there is a hole in the bucket describes a deadlock situation? To fix a bucket with a hole, the protagonist needs to cut a piece of straw with a knife, which needs to be sharpened on a sharpening stone which needs to be watered with water using the bucket, which has a hole.

Orthodox Easter Monday
May 2 all-day

Many Orthodox churches around the world observe Easter Monday, which is the day after the Orthodox Easter Sunday.

Easter Monday Orthodox Church Painted eggs are an important tradition during the Easter period. ©iStockphoto.com/Bob Drapella

Painted eggs are an important tradition during the Easter period.

What Do People Do?

In countries such as Greece, the Orthodox Easter Monday is a much more relaxed day when people can wind down or prepare to resume their work or study schedules. For some, it is a reflection of the events that occurred during Holy Week. Easter Monday is a day to finish leftover Easter meals that were not eaten the day before. The menu may include: lamb, spanokopita (spinach pie), dolmadakia (stuffed vine leaves), and loukoumathes (honey balls).

Easter Monday is also referred to as “Bright Monday” or “New Monday” in many Orthodox churches. “Bright Monday” falls on “Bright Week”, which is a seven-day period that begins on Easter Sunday. For many Orthodox Christians, the fast and the time of mourning is over and it is a time to be joyous and happy.

Public Life

Easter Monday is observed as an official holiday in countries including: Bulgaria, Cyprus, Greece, Republic of Macedonia, Romania, and Ukraine. Schools, banks and public offices may be closed on this day. Some embassies are closed in these countries on Easter Monday so travelers will need to confirm with their own embassies.

There are no federal Orthodox Easter public holidays in countries such as Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom, and the United States. However, Easter Monday is a time for families and friends of the Orthodox Christian faith to relax and reflect on the past week.

Background

In 325 CE the Council of Nicaea established the Easter date for churches around the world. However, in 1582 the Gregorian calendar was introduced and many western churches decided to observe the Easter period according to that calendar over the centuries. Many Orthodox churches still observe Easter in accordance with the Julian calendar, therefore they often follow a different Easter date compared with many western churches.

In the Orthodox circles, tensions exist between New Calendarists – those who use the revised Julian calendar for calculating the feasts of the ecclesiastical year – and Old Calendarists – those who continue to use the traditional Julian calendar. There have been a number of proposed Easter date reforms. In 1997 the World Council of Churches proposed a reform to solve the Easter date difference between churches that observe the Gregorian calendar and those that observe the Julian calendar. So far, this reform has not been implemented.

Symbols

One of the most common Orthodox Easter symbols is the dyed red to symbolize the blood of Christ. The egg was an important symbol in the mythologies of many early civilizations and was also connected with the springtime fertility rituals. Many Greek people rap their eggs against their friends’ eggs and the owner of the last uncracked egg is considered lucky. The red eggs are usually prepared on Holy Thursday in countries such as Greece. According to tradition, the Virgin Mary dyed eggs red to celebrate the Resurrection of Christ and to celebrate life.

One of the most common Christian symbols associated with Easter is the lamb. It is often depicted with a banner that bears a cross, and it is known as the Agnus Dei, meaning “Lamb of God” in Latin. The symbol’s origin relates to the Jewish Passover. In ancient times Jewish people sacrificed a lamb in the course of the festival. The early Christians associated the sacrifice of the lamb with Jesus Christ’s sacrifice on the cross. They connected the joyous Passover festival, which celebrates the liberation of Jewish people from years of bondage in Egypt, with the liberation from death represented by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

May
4
Fri
Star Wars Day
May 4 all-day

May 4 is considered as a Star Wars Day by fans of the popular film series, Star Wars. It is one of the two days in a year that recognize the importance of the Star Wars movies in popular culture and to allow fans of the saga to express their love for the movies.

Star Wars Day Church The lightsaber is a weapon used by the characters on Star Wars and is one of the most recognizable items in pop culture. ©thinkstockphoto.com

The lightsaber is a weapon used by the characters on Star Wars and is one of the most recognizable items in pop culture.

The origin of this day comes from a play on the words “may the force be with you”, an often quoted phrase in the Star Wars movies. Fans around the world have modified the phrase to create the pun “may the fourth be with you”. Fans have expanded the pun to include “revenge of the fifth”, which is a play on the title of the sixth movie in the series, Revenge of the Sith.

It is believed that the phrase was first used on May 4, 1979 when the Conservatives in the United Kingdom congratulated their candidate, Margaret Thatcher for taking office as UK’s Prime Minister by taking out a newspaper advertisement that said “may the fourth be with you, Maggie. Congratulations.

Star Wars is a film series and francise created by George Lucas. The fim series follow events in a galaxy “far, far away” in the “distant past”.

The other Star Wars Day celebrated in the year is May 25. This is when the first movie in the series was released in 1977. This unofficial holiday is also sometimes known as Greek Pride Day.

How to Celebrate?

  • Dress up like Star War characters and have a Star Wars themed party.
  • Greet everyone you meet with the phrase “may the force be with you”.
  • Organize marathon viewings of the saga, and participate in Star Wars trivia contests. .

Did You Know…

…that the South Pacific island of Niue accepts collectible Star Wars themed coins issued by the New Zealand Mint in 2011 as legal tender?

Soup’s On @ St Stephen's Memorial Hall
May 4 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

St Stephen’s Memorial Hall

hospitality-soups on-heritage

May
6
Sun
Beverage Day
May 6 all-day

Raise a glass to all your favorite beverages on Beverage Day.

Beverage Day Church Celebrate Beverage Day by drinking as much of your favorite beverage as you can! ©thinkstockphoto.com

Celebrate Beverage Day by drinking as much of your favorite beverage as you can!

This unofficial holiday is celebrated annually on May 6 and is also sometimes called National Beverage Day. While the origins of Beverage Day are unknown, we can all safely assume that the day encourages people to honor their beverages of choice and acknowledge that a humble beverage has the power to make or break many situations. A good beverage can energize you after a long, tiring day; it can make a long, boring meal go fast; it can bring together two strangers; and it can make a party more fun.

Whether your preferred beverage is a hot cup of tea, a delicious and healthy smoothie or a tall glass of lemonade, Beverage Day is the perfect excuse to indulge yourself by drinking it all day long.

  • Sit back, relax and celebrate the day with your favorite beverage. It could be anything from something as simple as water to a fancy cocktail.
  • Try new beverages. What about tasting the national drink of a country you have never visited?
  • Have a tasting party at home. Pick up a beverage you and your guests like and make or find different versions of it to taste and try. For example, you could do a beer or wine tasting party or a tea or coffee tasting party. Have each of your guests bring their favorite brand of beverage to share and serve foods that pair with the beverage of your choice. Who knows, you may just find your next favorite beverage at one of these parties!

Did You Know…

…that in common usage, water is not usually considered to be a beverage?

The Lord’s Day
May 6 all-day

The Lord’s Day in Christianity is generally Sunday, the principal day of communal worship.

the-lord's-day-fun-heritageIt is observed by most Christians as the weekly memorial of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, who is said in the canonical Gospels to have been witnessed alive from the dead early on the first day of the week. According to some sources, Christians held worship on Sunday in the 1st century.

How to Celebrate?

  • Attend a Church service. Stay for the meet and greet following.
  • Say a prayer for the first person comes to mind.
  • Resolve to be a kinder person.

Did You Know…

… The earliest Biblical example of Christians meeting together on a Sunday for the purpose of “breaking bread” and preaching is cited in the New Testament book The Acts of the Apostles chapter 20 and verse 7 (Acts 20:7).

May
7
Mon
Herb Day
May 7 all-day

Herb Day is an unofficial holiday annually celebrated on the first Saturday of May.

Herb Day Fun Church You can grow a herb garden right in your kitchen. ©iStockphoto.com/CBCK-Christine

You can grow a herb garden right in your kitchen.

Created and organized by the HerbDay Coalition which is an organization of five non-profit groups. The holiday encourages people to learn more about herbs and use them more extensively in their daily lives.

The holiday first began in 2006 in the United States. It brings together herbalists, gardeners, manufacturers of herbal products, culinarians and home cooks. It attempts to spread knowledge about the medicinal, culinary and cosmetic benefits of herbs.

Different From Spices

Botanically, herbs are green parts of a plant that are used in food, medicine or as addional flavoring. They are usually leaves and can be used fresh or dried. Herbs are distinct from spices. Spices are usually dried or processed non-leafy – seeds, barks, roots or stems – parts of a plant or a tree.

Worshipped Plants

People around the world use herbs for cooking and for medicinal purposes. Some cultures consider herbs as having spiritual qualities.  And extensively use them during religious ceremonies.  In India for example, basil is considered to be a holy plant and is worshipped in many parts of the country.

How to Celebrate?

  • Learn more about different kind of herbs and their uses.
  • Start a small herb garden in your kitchen – herbs are easy to grow and make your kitchen smell nice.

Did You Know…

…that some people perceive the taste of cilantro or coriander as being soapy and like eating bugs? Studies have shown that this is because they have a special olfactory receptor gene called OR6A2. This makes them sensitive to the aldehyde chemicals found in the herb.

May
8
Tue
Mother’s Day
May 8 all-day

Many Canadians celebrate Mother’s Day by showing their appreciation for mothers or mother figures. The Mother’s Day date in Canada is on the second Sunday of May each year.

Mothers-Day-Canada-Church Mother's Day is a day to remember mothers and mother figures. ©iStockphoto.com/Kateryna Govorushchenko

Mother’s Day is a day to remember mothers and mother figures.

What Do People Do?

Many people remember their mothers and mother figures on Mother’s Day. Mother figures may include stepmothers, relatives, mothers-in-law, a guardian (eg. a foster parent), or a family friend. There are many different ways to celebrate Mother’s Day. They include (but are not limited to):

  • Giving cards, flowers, or cakes.
  • Family gatherings or visits.
  • Family breakfasts, brunches, lunches, and dinners either at home, at a café or at a restaurant.
  • Personal phone calls, particularly from children who live away from their mothers and/or mother figures.
  • Mother’s Day poems and messages.
  • Gifts of chocolate, jewelry, accessories, clothing, hobby equipment or tools, handmade items, or gift vouchers.
  •  A day at the movies with mothers and/or mother figures.

Mother’s Day is celebrated in different countries, including China where carnations are popular Mother’s Day presents. Some groups in Samoa organize elaborate song and dance performances throughout the country. They celebrate the contributions that mothers make to Samoan society.

Public Life

Mother’s Day falls on different days depending on the countries where it is celebrated. It is held on the second Sunday of May in many countries, such as Australia, Canada and the United States. It is held exactly three weeks before Easter Sunday in the United Kingdom. Sundays are usually non-school and non-working days in these countries.

Mother’s Day is an annual public holiday in countries such as Costa Rica (August 15, on the same day as Assumption Day), Georgia (March 3), Samoa (second Monday of May), and Thailand (August 12). Restaurants and cafes may be busier than usual as some people take their mothers out for a treat.

Background

Early Mother’s Day celebrations can be dated back to the spring celebrations to honor Rhea, the Mother of the Gods, in ancient Greek civilization, according to some sources. Later, Mothering Sunday in the United Kingdom was traditionally a day for people to visit the church where they were baptized, although it now also celebrates motherhood in modern times.

The modern-day origins of Mother’s Day can be attributed to two women – Julia Ward Howe and Anna Jarvis, who were important in establishing the tradition in the United States. Around 1870, Julia Ward Howe called for Mother’s Day to be celebrated each year. It continued to be held in Boston for about 10 years under her sponsorship, but died out after that. Other sources say that Juliet Calhoun Blakely initiated Mother’s Day in Albion, Michigan, in the late 1800s. Her sons paid tribute to her each year and urged others to honor their mothers.

In 1907, Anna Jarvis held a private Mother’s Day celebration in memory of her mother, Ann Jarvis, in Grafton, West Virginia. In 1908, she played a key role in arranging a church service that attracted 407 children and their mothers. A Mother’s Day International Association was founded in 1912 to promote the holiday in other countries. Mother’s Day has grown increasingly popular since then.

Many people believe that Mother’s Day is now largely commercialized, with card companies, flower shops, jewelry stores, gift shops, restaurants, hotels, and department stores advertising promotions and special deals for this event. Anna Jarvis, in her lifetime, unsuccessfully filed a lawsuit to stop the over-commercialization of Mother’s Day.

Symbols

There are various ways to show an appreciation for mothers and mother figures on Mother’s Day. They include white carnations, which Anna Jarvis asked to be the official symbol for the day, as well as the International Mother’s Day Shrine. This shrine is dedicated to the preservation of motherhood. The structure is listed on the National Register of Historic Places in the United States. It is located together with a museum at Grafton, West Virginia, and aims to preserve, promote and develop the spirit of motherhood.

May
9
Wed
Lost Sock Memorial Day
May 9 all-day

Lost Sock Memorial Day on May 9 is a day to commemorate lost socks. The unofficial holiday also encourages people to let go of all the remaining single socks they are collecting in hopes of finding their partners one day.

Lost Sock Memorial Day Church Honor all the socks you have lost on Lost Sock Memorial Day. ©thinkstockphoto.com

Honor all the socks you have lost on Lost Sock Memorial Day.

There are few mysteries in life that are as perplexing as the mystery of the missing sock. No matter how hard you try to keep pairs of socks together, invariably one of them ventures out into the netherworld never to be found again.

Lost Sock Memorial Day is a day to honor all those disappeared socks.

How to Celebrate

  • Throw out all the single leftover socks.
  • Use the leftover socks as cleaning cloths. Or spend the day making sock monkeys out of the socks that have sadly lost their partners to the sock blackhole.
  • Have a minute of silence for all the socks you have lost.

Did You Know…

…that the feet have about 250,000 sweat glands that are capable of producing about 1 cup of sweat a day?

May
10
Thu
Clean Up Your Room Day
May 10 all-day

May 10, is Clean Your Room Day – an unofficial holiday that is bound to be any parentan’s or roommate’s favorite holiday and perhaps every child’s, teenager’s and lazy person’s nightmare.

Cleanup Your Room Day Church Roll up your sleeves and clean up your room on Clean Your Room Day. ©thinkstockphoto.com

Roll up your sleeves and clean up your room on Clean Your Room Day.

Also sometimes called the National Clean Up Your Room Day, this holiday of unknown origins aims at keeping the dust bunnies where they belong – the trash. The holiday promotes clean rooms and homes and encourages people to collect their cleaning supplies, don their cleaning clothes and gloves and spend the day spring cleaning.

Spring cleaning is a practice in many cultures where people clean their homes throughly once a year on the first warm day of spring. It is thought that this practice dates back to the days when people lit fires to keep warm during cold winter months. The first warm day of spring allowed people to open their windows and doors and to get rid of all the soot and ash that collected over the winter.

Even though Clean Your Room Day falls towards the end of the Spring season in the Northern Hemisphere, and Fall (Autumn) in the Southern Hemisphere, it is a good day as any to get cracking on the dusting, scrubbing and organizing. And who know, you may just find that thing you were looking for forever hiding in some dusty corner of your room.

How to Celebrate

  • Clean up your room and resolve to keep it clean every day.
  • Give away or throw any unwanted items or pieces of clothing that you no longer use.
  • If you have children, teach them about the virtues of a clean room. Help them organize their toys and books and reward them for keeping their room clean.
  • Get the family together and make cleaning a fun chore. Put on some fun music and dance while you clean. Give out rewards for milestones crossed – fastest time taken to clean, best organizer, and room with the least amount of dust.

Did You Know…

…that many cultures have a day assigned to cleaning during a year? In Iran, people clean their houses in preparation of the Persian New Year called Norooz, while in India people clean up their homes before the festivals of lights, Diwali.

May
11
Fri
National School Nurse Day
May 11 all-day

The Wednesday between May 6 and May 12 of each year is National School Nurse Day, a day to celebrate and thank all school nurses that take care of children when they are at school.

School  Nurse Day Church Thank all your school nurses for making sure you went to school and stayed in school healthy on National School Nurse Day. ©thinkstockphoto.com

Thank all your school nurses for making sure you went to school and stayed in school healthy on National School Nurse Day.

The unofficial holiday was created in 1972 by the National Association of School Nurses, based in the United States. The day aims to recognize school nurses and acknowledge their role in the educational setting.

School nurses are nursing practitioners usually affiliated with a school or an educational institution. School nurses are one of the first line of medical professionals to ensure the health and mental well-being of school going children and young adults. They are also responsible for monitoring that children in schools are achieving their developmental milestones as well as ensuring that their lives outside the school are safe and healthy.

National School Nurse Day, also known as School Nurse Day, is celebrated during National Nurse Week, which runs annually from May 6 to May 12. May 6 is celebrated as National Nurses Day, while May 12, the birthday of Florence Nightingale is celebrated worldwide as International Nurses Day.

How to Celebrate?

  • Thank your school nurse for taking care of you.
  • Learn more about what school nurses do.
  • If you have school going children, help your children make thank you gifts or write thank you notes for their school nurse.

Did You Know…

…that Florence Nightingale is thought to be responsible for creating the foundation for modern day nursing? Known as the Lady with the Lamp, she opened the Florence Nightingale School of Nursing and Midwifery in 1860, which was the world’s first secular nursing school and remains one of the world’s oldest schools to be still operational.

Soup’s On @ St Stephen's Memorial Hall
May 11 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

St Stephen’s Memorial Hall

hospitality-soups on-heritage

May
12
Sat
Limerick Day
May 12 all-day

May 12 is Limerick Day. It is an unofficial holiday that encourages people to read and write limericks, a genre of humorous poetry that first originated in England in the 18th century.

Limerick Day Church The Adare manor and gardens in Limerick, Ireland. ©bigstockphoto.com/Patryk Kosmider

The Adare manor and gardens in Limerick, Ireland.

Limerick Day, also sometimes called National Limerick Day honors the birthday of Edward Lear, English poet, and author. Born in 1812, Lear popularized this form of poetry in his 1846 book called A Book of Nonsense.

Limerick is a genre of poetry that traditionally has 5 lines and has a AABBA rhyme scheme. A rhyme scheme is the pattern of rhymes in a poem. To identify a poem’s rhyme scheme, each line is designated with a letter. Lines that share a letter rhyme have words at the end that rhyme with each other. This means that in a limerick, which has a AABBA rhyme scheme, the words at the end of the first, second and fifth sentences rhyme, while the words at the end of the third and fourth sentence rhyme with each other.

Traditionally, the first line of a limerick introduced a person and a place and the rest of the poem described a humorous and often times obscene situation involving the subject or the place.

It is believed that the term limerick to refer to this specific genre of poetry comes from the city of Limerick, Ireland.

How to Celebrate

  • Celebrate limerick day by reading some of Lear’s limericks. Also, check out other poets’ limericks as well.
  • Write your own limericks and share them with your family and friends.

Did You Know…

…that oldest surviving poem, the Epic of Gilgamesh, is from the 3 BCE?

May
13
Sun
Frog Jumping Day
May 13 all-day

May 13 is Frog Jumping Day, a fun day to jump like a frog.

Frog Jumping Church Jump like a frog or learn more about frogs on Frog Jumping Day ©thinkstockphoto.com

Jump like a frog or learn more about frogs on Frog Jumping Day

According to several sources the unofficial holiday celebrates a short story named Jim Smiley and His Jumping Frog by Mark Twain. In the story, a compulsive better named Jim Smiley trains a frog to jump and bets with a man that his frog can jump higher than any other frog in the town. The man dupes Jim Smiley and wins the bet. It is however, unclear why the inventor of this day chose May 13 as the date for this “hoppy” holiday.

Frogs have great jumping capabilities and are the best jumpers among all vertebrates given their size.

How to Celebrate

  • Anyone celebrating the day could jump like a frog. Make sure you do not do this in a heavily crowded or trafficked area.
  • Go see frogs jump at your local aquarium or pond. And learn more about frogs and their habitats.
  • Read Jim Smiley and His Jumping Frog and other works by Mark Twain.

Did You Know…

…that a group of frogs is called an army?

The Lord’s Day
May 13 all-day

The Lord’s Day in Christianity is generally Sunday, the principal day of communal worship.

the-lord's-day-fun-heritageIt is observed by most Christians as the weekly memorial of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, who is said in the canonical Gospels to have been witnessed alive from the dead early on the first day of the week. According to some sources, Christians held worship on Sunday in the 1st century.

How to Celebrate?

  • Attend a Church service. Stay for the meet and greet following.
  • Say a prayer for the first person comes to mind.
  • Resolve to be a kinder person.

Did You Know…

… The earliest Biblical example of Christians meeting together on a Sunday for the purpose of “breaking bread” and preaching is cited in the New Testament book The Acts of the Apostles chapter 20 and verse 7 (Acts 20:7).

May
14
Mon
Astronomy Day
May 14 all-day

Astronomy Day is celebrated twice a year, once in spring and once in the fall.

Astronomy Day Fun Church Look up the sky and behold the celestial wonders of the universe on Astronomy Day. ©bigstockphoto.com/ababaka

Look up the sky and behold the celestial wonders of the universe on Astronomy Day.

In the spring, the holiday is held on the Saturday closest to the first quarter Moon between the months of April and May, while in the fall (autumn) it occurs on a Saturday closest to the quarter moon between September and October.

Created in 1973

Astronomy Day was created in 1973 by Doug Berger, then president of the Astronomical Association of Northern California. The unofficial holiday is an attempt to raise the interest of the general public in astronomy by giving them easy access to astronomical instruments like telescopes.

The holiday also seeks to bridge the knowledge gap by giving the public a chance to interact with astronomers and space scientists.

Observe the Sky

On the day, museums, observatories, universities and astronomy clubs around the world set up easily accessible telescopes in public spaces including schools, parks and shopping malls to allow people to observe the skies during the day and night. Other events include lectures and conferences, educational outreach, exhibitions, and essay competitions.

An Ancient Science

Astronomy is the study of celestial bodies and non-Earthly phenomena. It deals with objects like the planets, stars, asteroids as well as events such as eclipses and meteor showers.

Studied since ancient times, the field of astronomy originated and evolved over millennia due to the need for humans to understand the history and science of the Earth and to comprehend the causes of celestial events.

Until very recently, astronomy and astrology were seen as related fields of study. It was only in the 17th century, that the two separated ways. Today, astrology is seen as a field that deals with spirituality rather than science.

How to Celebrate?

  • Attend a local Astronomy Day event. Bring family and friends with you and spend some time gazing at the sky through the lenses of a telescope.
  • Learn more about astronomy and how to study it as an amateur astronomer. You can start here.
  • If you have children in your life, today is the perfect day to introduce them to the magic of astronomy. Who knows, they may grow up to become the next Carl Sagan or Carolyn Shoemaker!

Did You Know…

…that we can actually see the past? Light from distant stars take a very long time to reach the Earth, so when we look at a star through a telescope we are looking at the light that left the star several hundred, thousands or even million years ago!

May
17
Thu
Pack Rat Day
May 17 all-day

Pack Rat Day is celebrated every year on May 17. The unofficial holiday encourages people to do some late spring-cleaning and to make space for newer, more useful things in their lives.

pack-rat-day-church Pack Rat Day is about acknowledging that all of us sometimes collect useless and unnecessary things. ©thinkstockphoto.com

Pack Rat Day is about acknowledging that all of us sometimes collect useless and unnecessary things.

Have you ever noticed how easy it is to collect useless things? Get rid of things that you don’t need anymore and de-clutter your house, workspace and your life on Pack Rat Day.

Pack rat is the term used to describe a person who tends to collect objects – useful and useless – and does not easily get rid of them. While many of us can be pack rats in certain areas of our lives, being a hoarder can be a serious issue. In many people the pack rat behavior can create major mental and physical health issues.

The term pack rat comes from the rodent of the same name. Also called woodrats, these rodents are known to be nesters. They collect anything they can find to make their nests. They are known to get distracted by shiny new things – if they see something they like, they will drop what they are currently holding to get the shiny new item for their nest!

How to Celebrate?

Collecting is not always a bad thing. Whether it is baseball cards, vintage chocolate wrappers or old cars, Pack Rat Day is a reminder that there is a fine line between collecting and hoarding and that sometimes it is ok to get rid of old things to make way for newer things. Here are some ways to observe this holiday:

  • Take the day off to do some organizing. Throw away or donate anything you haven’t used for over 6 months.
  • If you know of someone who is a hoarder, get them some help. Hoarding can sometimes become a problem that can have a negative effect on a person’s life.
  • Read more about actual pack rats, rodents who pick up shiny objects and leave pebbles and nuts in their place.

Did You Know…

…that fosslized pack rat middens are a rich source of information about the history of the environment in the area? Middens are debris piles created by the materials collected by the rodents and preserved by their urine. The oldest middens found were about 50,000 years old.