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Cultures And Customs From The Other Culture--007: American Holidays
By Mr. Michael F. Guerra (U.S.A.)

Hi, friends, I am so lucky that I have got so much help and supports from many good friends. :-) As soon as the biggest festival -- Christmas in the Western world past, I received a wonderful letter from Mr. Michael F. Guerra (U.S.A.) to introduce something about American Holidays. :-) So, after having the permission by Mr. Michael F. Guerra, I would like to publish his writing here and hope it is helpful to you to understand the cultures from the other culture -- also maybe from your own cultures. :-)

If you enjoy writing and publishing something about your cultures or something else here, If you have any questions, comments and suggestions, please write to , or, You are welcomed.

Sat, Dec 31, 2005

Dear Shirley,

Christmas has come and gone and the New Year is just around the corner

I came across a list of American holidays recently and thought I would share them with you for reference.    Unlike the east, our holidays are usually one day holidays.   We rarely have a festival as you would think of it.

The official, government recognized holidays (those that government offices, banks and Post Offices close for) are the following eleven:

     New Years Day - 1 January
     Martin Luther King Day - 17 January (observed 3rd Monday in January)
     Inauguration Day - 20 January After U.S Presidential election (held every 4 years)
     Presidents Day (Washington's Birthday) (observed 3rd Monday in February)
     Memorial Day - 30 May (observed last Monday in May)
     Independence Day - 4 July
     Labor Day - 5 September (observed 1st Monday in September)
     Columbus Day - 10 October (observed 2nd Monday in October)
     Veterans' Day - 11 November
     Thanksgiving Day - 24 November (observed 4th Thursday in November)
     Christmas Day - 25 December

Those are the main recognized Holidays.    However there are also the following Holidays, Celebrations and Dates that are celebrated depending on Ethnic background, religious preference and location:

     February 2 (every year): Groundhog Day
     February 12 (every year): Lincoln's Birthday
     February 14 (every year): St. Valentines Day
     February 22 (every year): Washington's Birthday (traditional)
     March 17 (every year): St. Patrick's Day
     April 1 (every year): April Fool's Day
     March 25, 2005 (April 14, 2006): Good Friday
     March 27, 2005 (April 16, 2006): Easter Sunday
     April 22 (every year): Earth Day
     April 27, 2005 (April 26, 2006): Administrative Professionals Day (National Secretary's Day)
     May 5 (every year): Cinco de Mayo
     May 8, 2005 (May 14, 2006): Mother's Day (2nd Sunday in May)
     May 21, 2005 (May 20, 2006): Armed Forces Day (3rd Saturday in May)
     June 14 (every year): Flag Day
     June 19, 2005 (June 18, 2006): Father's Day (3rd Sunday in June)
     July 24, 2005 (July 23, 2006): Parents' Day (4th Sunday in July)
     September 11, 2005 (Sept. 10, 2006): Grandparents' Day (first Sunday after Labor Day)
     September 16 (every year): Stepfamily Day
     September 17 (every year): Citizenship Day
     Native American Day: 4th Friday in September, celebrated (observed) many different days
     October 16 (every year): Boss's Day (National Bosses Day)
     October 15, 2005 (Oct. 21, 2006): Sweetest Day (3rd Saturday in Oct)
     October 31 (every year): Halloween
     November 8, 2005 (Nov. 7, 2006): Election Day (first Tuesday after first Monday in Nov)
     November 17, 2005 (TBA 2006]: Annual Great American Smoke out. stop smoking for one day,
     December 26 - Jan. 2, 2005 (Dec. 16-23, 2006): Chanukah/Hanukkah
     December 26 - Jan 1 (every year): Kwanzaa
     December 31 (every year): New Year's Eve

     April 2, 2005: Daylight Savings Time STARTS - set clocks ahead one hour.
     October 30, 2005: Daylight Savings Time ENDS - set clocks back one hour.

     March 20, 2005: First Day of Spring (Vernal Equinox - day and night are of equal length).
     June 21, 2005: First day of Summer (Summer Solstice - longest day of the year).
     Sept. 22, 2005: First day of Fall (Autumnal Equinox - night and day are of equal length).
     December 21, 2005: First day of Winter (Winter Solstice - shortest day of the year).

As you can see, even we tend to be confused at times.   

Have fun with this list.   There are at least 25 to 30 other days that I haven't listed that are celebrations that are observed by various groups.

-- Michael
Dec, 2005