Memorial Day, May 25
Memorial Day is a federal holiday in the United States for remembering the people who died while serving in the country’s armed forces. The holiday, which is observed every year on the last Monday of May, originated as Decoration Day after the American Civil War in 1868. The Grand Army of the Republic, an organization of Union veterans founded in Decatur, Illinois, established it as a time for the nation to decorate the graves of the Union war dead with flowers. By the 20th century, competing Union and Confederate holiday traditions, celebrated on different days, had merged, and Memorial Day eventually extended to honor all Americans who died while in the military service. It marks the start of the unofficial summer vacation season, while Labor Day marks its end.
Father’s Day, June 21
Father’s Day is always celebrated on the third Sunday in June. Like Mother’s Day, Father’s Day has a modern origin. The idea came to Mrs. John Dodd as she sat listening to a Mother’s Day sermon in 1909. Her father, William Smart, had raised his children alone on his Washington farm after his wife died giving birth to their sixth child. Mrs. Dodd proposed to the Spokane Ministerial Association and the YMCA that they celebrate a “father’s day” on June 5, her father’s birthday. The idea received strong support, but the good ministers of Spokane asked that the day be changed to give them extra time to prepare sermons on the unexplored subject of fathers.
The first Father’s Day was observed on June 19, 1910, in Spokane, Washington, and soon other towns had their own celebrations. In spite of widespread support, Father’s Day did not become a permanent national holiday until 1972, when President Richard Nixon signed a law declaring that it be celebrated annually on the third Sunday in June.
Take Your Dog to Work Day, June 26
Created by Pet Sitters International in 1999, Take Your Dog to Work Day is observed on June 26 this year to celebrate the great companions dogs make and to encourage adoptions from local shelters, rescue groups and humane societies. The day offers a fun, summer Friday for U.S. employees to introduce their four-legged best friend to co-workers, and PSI believes that dogless co-workers will be encouraged to adopt when they witness the human-animal bond. There is also increasing participation in TYDTWD in Canada, Australia, United Kingdom and New Zealand.
The day isn’t necessarily just for dogs, though. In fact, the entire week after Father’s Day is Take Your Pet to Work Week, starting on Monday, June 22, with the official Take Your Cat to Work Day. However, in this day and age of the coronavirus, we encourage you to make it a virtual “take your pet to work” day if you’re telecommuting by posting pictures of your pet on social media.