Groundhog Day History
Groundhog Day marks the midway point between the winter solstice and the vernal equinox. It is a derivative from the early Christian holiday of Candlemas Day. The holiday is commemorated when a famous groundhog, Punxsutawney Phil, emerges from his burrow and looks for his shadow. The tradition goes that this day, is used to help determine how many weeks of winter might be left. It is observed every year on February 2nd and was established in 1887.
National Wear Red Day History
National Wear Red Day is a holiday dedicated to raising awareness about heart disease. Heart disease is currently the number one killer of women in America, claiming the lives of approximately 500,000 American women annually.
National Wear Red Day was established by the American Heart Association and National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute in 2003. The day is celebrated annually by wearing red color to represent the fight against heart disease and stroke in an effort to generate awareness and initiate change. By the 13th anniversary of the National Wear Red Day, the campaign had achieved many positive goals including these statistics: more than 33% of women in America have lost weight and more than 50% of American women are more physically active. National Wear Red Day is celebrated on the first Friday of February annually.
February 4 –
Super Bowl History
The Super Bowl is the season final championship game of National Football League (NFL) in the United States of America. The matchup for this game is the winning teams of the National Football Conference (NFC) and the American Football Conference (AFC). Super Bowl 1 was held in February of 1967. The 2016 game was Super Bowl 50.
The Super Bowl is one of the most watched television events in the United States. According Nielsen Media Research, in had over 114.4 million viewers in 2015. It is held on the first Sunday in February.
World Cancer Day History
World Cancer Day aims to save lives by raising awareness and educating the population about cancer. The day also serves to pressure governments and individuals to take action in order to prevent, treat and control cancers. Cancer is a heterogeneous group of diseases that result from abnormal cell growth and have the potential to spread to other parts of the body.
On February 4, 2000, World Cancer Day was officially established by the Paris Charter at the World Summit Against Cancer for the New Millennium in Paris. The Paris Charter sought to promote research for a cure, prevention, services for patients and support from the global community.
February 12 –
Abraham Lincoln’s birthday
Abraham Lincoln was an American statesman and lawyer who served as the 16th President of the United States from March 1861 until his assassination in April 1865.
February 13 –
Mardi Gras History
Mardi Gras marks the end of the Carnival season, a period observed by many Roman Catholics that starts at Epiphany on January 6 and ends on the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday (Mardi Gras). Since Mardi Gras is the last day before lent (a solemn period observed by prayer, repentance, fasting, and moderation), it is often associated with lavish Carnival-like celebrations.
Also, Shrove Tuesday (Pancake Day) History
Shrove Tuesday, also known as Pancake Day and Mardi Gras, is a day for feasting in preparation for the sacrifice and fasting period of Lent, which begins the following day with Ash Wednesday. Celebrations continue into the night of Shrove Tuesday as people engage in eating rich and fatty foods but they must end by midnight. Carnivals are common during the Pre-Lenten Season, known as Shrovetide, street parties, carnivals and parades are also common. Aside from merriment, Shrovetide also serves the purpose of analyzing one’s own self and finding wrongdoings that need to be repent over Lent, as well as finding ones areas of spiritual growth that need God’s blessing.
February 14 –
Ash Wednesday History
Ash Wednesday is mainly a Catholic observance in which ashes is marked on the forehead of parishioners in the shape of a cross. The ashes are meant as a reminder of our mortality and sinfulness.
Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of Lent, a 40 day period (excluding Sundays) that ends with Easter. This is a solemn period observed by prayer, repentance, fasting, and moderation. Sundays are excluded as they are considered a celebratory day that represents the resurrection of Jesus and the Sabbath day of rest.
Valentine’s Day History
Valentine’s Day is a celebration of love and friendship. The idea of Valentine’s Day seems to have originated during the Middle Ages, somewhere around the 14th or 15th century. The holiday derived its name from two Roman martyrs for love, both named Valentine.
The first Valentine was beheaded on February 14th, but not before leaving a note signed from your Valentine for his lady. The second Valentine was supposedly a bishop who secretly married young couples, an act that was forbidden by the Roman Emperor who wanted young men to first serve as soldiers before marrying. Valentine ignored the law and was beheaded on February 14. An ancient Roman festival called Lupercalia, a celebration for which young men randomly chose the name of a young girl to escort to the festivities, has also been linked to the origins of Valentine’s Day. Since then, the custom of selecting a sweetheart on February 14th has spread through Europe and its colonies and transformed itself into the celebration of love and friendship that we know today.
February 16 –
Chinese New Year History
Chinese New Year or Spring Festival celebrates a year of hard work and gives people the opportunity to wish for a lucky new year. It is China’s most important festival and involves family reunions, elaborate decorations and giving red envelopes.
Chinese New Year is based on the Chinese Lunar Calendar and usually falls between January 21 and February 20. In 2017 Chinese New Year is celebrated on January 288th. The Calendar functions on a 12 year animal cycle that many associate with the celebration.
February 19 –
President’s Day History
President’s Day, or Washington’s Birthday as it is still legally known, was originally designed as a celebration of George Washington’s birth date. In 1880, Congress voted to make this the first national holiday which honored an individual. In 1968, Congress enacted the Uniform Monday Bill, to give workers as many long weekends as possible. This moved as many holidays to a standard Monday each year. Many states were already honoring Abraham Lincoln’s birthday, February 12th, and this celebration was combined with George Washington’s birthday, for one federal holiday. It is observed on the third Monday in February each year.
February 21 –
International Mother Language Day History
International Mother Language Day seeks to promote linguistic and cultural diversity and multilingualism. The day also seeks to support quality education, unity, diversity and international understanding. Language is the most effective way humans have of communicating with one another and acts as a powerful instrument in the preservation and development of culture and ethnicity. According to UNESCO, about 2,500 languages, and thus their cultures, are currently at risk of extinction within a few generations.
International Mother Language day was proclaimed by UNESCO in November of 1999 and was first observed on February 21, 2000. The chosen date commemorates the date on which a group of university students were killed by the Pakistani Police in Dhaka (now Bangladesh) for using their mother language.