President’s Day

President’s Day is a national holiday celebrated on the third Monday in February every year. This year it was  February 20th. Tracing its roots back to the beginning of the seventeenth-century, President’s Day was originally created to celebrate George Washington’s Birthday. In 1879 Congress passed into law a federal holiday on February 22nd to honor him. In the 1960s there was a shift from his birthday celebration to President’s Day. In 1968, The Uniform Monday Holiday Act was passed and in 1971 officially took effect from an executive order from President Nixon.

Throughout the history of the United States, presidents have had difficult and unique challenges presented to them such as creating, rebuilding, and leading the Union through war while also managing pandemics, social changes, and the economy. Similarly, presidents have each had unique ways to celebrate themselves in the White House. From Andrew Jackson having the White House open to the public while featuring a 1400-pound block of cheese to Abraham Lincoln reading George Washington’s farewell address, each President chooses how they will celebrate President’s Day during their term.

America, however, is very consistent on how we celebrate President’s day. One of the main reasons why it occurs on the third Monday every year is because of the push for a three-day weekend for workers and federal employees. Even though a long weekend is the main celebration, many people still go to parades, light fireworks, and fire up the grill. 

“Every year I dress up as George Washington and parade around Apex, blasting American music” said Hugh Telke.

Another way we can honor former presidents on this special day is by remembering some not so famous presidents. One example is James K. Polk, who finished manifest destiny for the Union and convinced Texas to join the Union. Another example is Ulysses S. Grant, a Civil War General who led us through Reconstruction. No matter which president is your favorite, President’s day is a day to celebrate them all.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s