July Holidays

Collection by Cathy Earle

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Cathy Earle
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July 1 - ZIP Code Day

Posted on July 1, 2019 July 1 is National Postal Workers Day in the U.S. AND U.S. Postage Stamp Day (see link below, in "Also on this date") - but it's also ZIP Code Day. That's because the first 5-digit ZIP codes were introduced all over the United States on this date in 1963. In order to encourage people to use the new ZIP codes, a sort of ZIP code mascot, Mr. ZIP, was introduced in ads. The emphasis was on speed! The use of the ZIP codes was not mandatory, but people were urged to use…

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July 2 - Independence Day in Bahia (Brazil)

Posted on July 2, 2019 Brazil's Independence Day is September 7. But in the Brazilian state of Bahia, an equally important independence day is celebrated today! Dom Pedro I Brazil's "Liberator," Dom Pedro I, had declared independence from Portugal for all of Brazil on September 7, 1822. That's strange, actually, because Pedro was born in Lisbon, Portugal, the fourth son of the King of Portugal. When Pedro was around nine years old, France invaded Portugal, and the royal family fled to…

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July 5 - Independence Day in Cape Verde

Posted on July 5, 2019 10 volcanic islands. 350 miles off the coast of Africa, in the Atlantic Ocean. (That translates to roughly 570 km.) 0 population until 1456, when Portuguese navigators first discovered the islands. #1 permanent settlement by Europeans within the tropics. 1000s and 1000s of enslaved people passing through from Africa to the Americas. 7 different times Cidade Velho (then called Ribiera Grande) was destroyed by pirates - including twice by Sir Francis Drake. (Yes, Drake…

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July 6 - Statehood Day in Lithuania

Posted on July 6, 2019 Lithuania, like so many other nations, broke away from the USSR in 1990-1991, so I thought "Statehood Day" was the celebration of that event. However, the events that gave rise to modern, independent Lithuanian are celebrated by another holiday: Day of Restitution of Independence of Lithuania, on March 11. (And Lithuania had earlier declared itself independent, at the end of World War I, on February 16, 1918, giving rise to yet another patriotic holiday: Day of…

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July 7 - Unity Day in Yemen

Posted on July 7, 2019 The words are awful: civil war. That means that a nation is tearing itself apart, two or more factions of the people fighting one another, spilling blood, grasping for control, power - or maybe striving to right a grievous wrong. In the case of Yemen's 1994 Civil War, there were tensions over religious differences (Shia and Sunni), and there was disagreement about how important Islamic law should be in the nation's laws. There was anger about unfair economic conditions…

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July 10 - Don't Step on a Bee Day

Posted on July 10, 2019 Two good reasons NOT to step on a bee: (1) You don't want to be stung. Especially not on your foot. (2) Bees are in trouble. And they are super-duper precious to the world and specifically to humans! I guess I don't have to say anything more about #1. Right? Even if you're not allergic to bee stings (if you are, use your epipen and seek medical help immediately), they swell and they hurt! But, as to #2: You probably know that bees make honey. People love honey! Also…

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July 11 – Make Your Own Sundae Day

July 11 – Sundaes and Slurpees and Smiles, Oh My!

Posted on July 11, 2018 Today is supposed to be Make Your Own Sundae Day. It's also Slurpee Day, in honor of the unofficial birthday of the 7-11 store chain. Apparently, if you bring your own cup, you can score a small free slurpee at a 7-11 today! Every year, 7-11 has a new flavor for Slurpee Day; this year it is Red Dawn Monster Mutant. I bet it tastes a lot like the classic cherry flavor, but that's just a guess. By the way, you can have your freebie be any available flavor - it doesn't…

July 11 – Slurpee Day

July 11 – Sundaes and Slurpees and Smiles, Oh My!

Posted on July 11, 2018 Today is supposed to be Make Your Own Sundae Day. It's also Slurpee Day, in honor of the unofficial birthday of the 7-11 store chain. Apparently, if you bring your own cup, you can score a small free slurpee at a 7-11 today! Every year, 7-11 has a new flavor for Slurpee Day; this year it is Red Dawn Monster Mutant. I bet it tastes a lot like the classic cherry flavor, but that's just a guess. By the way, you can have your freebie be any available flavor - it doesn't…

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July 12 – Simplicity Day

July 12 – Simplicity Day

Posted on July 12, 2018 Today is not about choosing to live in poverty. Some people who live very simple lives do choose a life almost cut off from monetary concerns - for example, someone might choose to trade farm labor for a super-simple cabin on the farm and farm-fresh food. But living with greater simplicity doesn't necessarily mean being poor. Today is not about choosing to live without technology. Some people do choose to live without electronics - for example, many Amish people live…

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July 13 - National Nitrogen Ice Cream Day

Posted on July 13, 2019 The month of July is considered National Ice Cream Month in the United States - no surprise, since it is a very hot month, perfect for chilly treats! But today's special day is puzzling to some - what is NITROGEN ice cream??? You might already know that liquid nitrogen is really, really cold - like, -321 degrees F (-196 degrees C) cold! Science teachers have been using liquid nitrogen to do cool demos like instantly freezing a leaf, rose, or carnation - or freezing a…

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July 14 - Carver Day

July 14 - Carver Day

Posted on July 14, 2018 Hopefully you've heard of George Washington Carver (I've written about him here and here). Some people think of Carver as "The Peanut Man," but this inventor and scientist was way more than that! When Carver was a child and could barely even read (he was born into slavery), he was so into nature that he noticed how various plants responded to different conditions... People who lived near him began to ask for his advice about plants, often handing over a potted plant…

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July 15 – Be a Dork Day

Posted on July 15, 2019 Personally insulting people is a no-good, very bad thing. (If you don't like what someone is saying or doing, tell them so. But be specific: "I don't like it when you do ____" or "I think that's a mean thing to say!" Don't get into personal insults like, "You're so lame!" or "Gosh, you're dumb" or "You're too ugly to talk to me.") And making fun of people, bullying them, taunting them, name-calling - these are horrible, terrible, no-good, very bad things, for sure. A…

July 15 – His Majesty the Sultan's Birthday in Brunei

July 15 – His Majesty the Sultan's Birthday in Brunei

Posted on July 15, 2018 Since today is a Sunday, the tiny Southeast Asian nation of Brunei will be on holiday tomorrow, Monday, in honor of the sultan. But today is the actual birthday of His Majesty Paduka Seri Baginda Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu'izzaddin Waddaulah. Not only is Hassanal Bolkiah the sultan and the head of state - with "emergency powers" under martial law, but that's been ever since 1962, so not what we normally think of as an emergency! - but he is also the Prime Minister…

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July 17 – Constitution Day in South Korea

Posted on July 17, 2019 There aren't many nations that can point to 500 years of uninterrupted self-rule, but Korea can point to way longer than that - from the late 7th Century (the 600s) until 1910, when Korea was taken over by Japan. That's more than 1,200 years of self-rule!! One portion of that long period is called the Joseon Dynasty, which was founded July 17, 1392. That dynasty ruled for about 500 years, and the auspicious date July 17 was deliberately chosen for the day of adoption…

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July 19 - Start of the Largest Mud Festival in the World!

Posted on July 19, 2019 In 1998, a town in South Korea hosted a Mud Festival to call attention to its mud-based cosmetics. Just a couple of decades later, the Boryeong Mud Festival has gone from a little-known upstart festival to the most popular festival in all of Korea, with thousands of attendees (in 2007, 2.2 million!!!). Umm...a mud festival? Yep! There's everything from colored-mud face painting and mud marathons to mudflats football and a kid-safe mud zone! In Mud Experienceland…

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July 20 - Moon Day 50!!!

Posted on July 20, 2019 Half a century since humans first landed on the Moon! That's...astonishing to those of us who actually remember it. It still seems...so modern, so current, so cutting-edge of human exploration. I guess because, in the past 50 years, nobody's really topped it. There have been - so far - zero humans landing on Mars, for example. Neil Armstrong talked about a "giant leap" for humanity...but of course it was the 1960s (and, back then, the U.S. hadn't even had a single…

July 20 - International Cake Day

July 20 - International Cake Day

Posted on July 20, 2018 Today's food holiday is a good one. A yummy one, if you will. A rich and varied one! It's International Cake Day! What is cake? Well, it's a dessert that is baked, and in it's oldest forms it's a variation of bread. But I eat a lot of sweet breads - like banana bread, cinnamon swirl raisin bread, lemon pecan loaf (yum!) - that I never think of calling "cake." I think it may be a semantics thing. If I think about lemon pecan loaf, it IS sort of like fruitcake (but a…

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July 21 - Feast Day of St. George in Malta

Posted on July 21, 2019 Where is Malta? This European nation is made up of three inhabited islands and a number of smaller, uninhabited islands. (And islets or, let's be honest, large rocks!) The archipelago of islands are in the Mediterranean Sea, located between Italy and Africa. It's one of the world's smallest nations, but it is very densely populated and also a beacon to tourists. Its location has historically been of strategic importance for navies and for merchants. Today people on…

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July 23 – Renaissance Day in Oman

Posted on July 23, 2019 Today is the anniversary of the current ruler of Oman ascending to the throne, on this date in 1970. Sultan Qaboos bin Said al Said over the throne in a bloodless coup, and he'd sent the previous sultan into exile. Which is kind of sad, given that the previous sultan was his father! (To be fair, Qaboos's dad HAD put him under what amounted to house arrest for years! It was a nice house - a palace, in fact - but who wants to be locked up even in a nice, big place, and…

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July 24 - National Drive-Thru Day

Posted on July 24, 2019 The first drive-thru restaurant might have been Red's Giant Hamburg in Springfield, Missouri. The ease of picking up food without having to find a parking spot - not to mention gathering all the kids and herding them safely across the parking lot and inside the restaurant, only to be met with a line at the counter! - this convenience is what made "fast food" and "drive-thru"s so popular. Driving in a pouring rainstorm is bad enough; but having to get out of the car…

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July 28 - National Water Park Day

Posted on July 28, 2019 This is a great time to celebrate water parks (in the Northern Hemisphere, at least!) - it's almost guaranteed to be hot and sunny in many cities. If you get to go to a water park to celebrate, PLEASE be safe. Wear water wings or a life jacket if you don't swim. Stay with your buddy, follow directions from lifeguards, and be considerate of other guests. Wear sunscreen, and cover up after it loses its effectiveness. A hat and sunglasses are a great idea when you can…

July 27 – National Revolution Days in Cuba

Posted on July 27, 2019 Today is the last day in a three-day festival that celebrates the anniversary of an unsuccessful attempt to overthrow Flugencio Batista, Cuba's leader, in 1953. Batista had himself taken over the government in a coup; he was a corrupt dictator who suspended the constitution, censored the media, tortured people who resisted his rule, and even publicly executed protesters. Batista was a bad guy - but U.S. corporations, which owned much of Cuba's farmland and resources…

July 26 - Celebration Days of Saint Anne of Haiti

Posted on July 26, 2019 Many people believe that praying to particular gods, goddesses, or saints concerning particular kinds of problems is worthwhile. Whether someone wants a miracle cure for infertility or an illness...or success in love or business...or rain for one's crops or comfort for one's grief...relief from money problems or from insect pests - they may target their requests to gods / goddesses / saints who "specialize" in that area. In Haiti, a black saint named Anne Charitable…

July 24 - National Drive-Thru Day

Posted on July 24, 2019 The first drive-thru restaurant might have been Red's Giant Hamburg in Springfield, Missouri. The ease of picking up food without having to find a parking spot - not to mention gathering all the kids and herding them safely across the parking lot and inside the restaurant, only to be met with a line at the counter! - this convenience is what made "fast food" and "drive-thru"s so popular. Driving in a pouring rainstorm is bad enough; but having to get out of the car…

July 23 – Renaissance Day in Oman

Posted on July 23, 2019 Today is the anniversary of the current ruler of Oman ascending to the throne, on this date in 1970. Sultan Qaboos bin Said al Said over the throne in a bloodless coup, and he'd sent the previous sultan into exile. Which is kind of sad, given that the previous sultan was his father! (To be fair, Qaboos's dad HAD put him under what amounted to house arrest for years! It was a nice house - a palace, in fact - but who wants to be locked up even in a nice, big place, and…

July 21 - Feast Day of St. George in Malta

Posted on July 21, 2019 Where is Malta? This European nation is made up of three inhabited islands and a number of smaller, uninhabited islands. (And islets or, let's be honest, large rocks!) The archipelago of islands are in the Mediterranean Sea, located between Italy and Africa. It's one of the world's smallest nations, but it is very densely populated and also a beacon to tourists. Its location has historically been of strategic importance for navies and for merchants. Today people on…

July 20 - Moon Day 50!!!

Posted on July 20, 2019 Half a century since humans first landed on the Moon! That's...astonishing to those of us who actually remember it. It still seems...so modern, so current, so cutting-edge of human exploration. I guess because, in the past 50 years, nobody's really topped it. There have been - so far - zero humans landing on Mars, for example. Neil Armstrong talked about a "giant leap" for humanity...but of course it was the 1960s (and, back then, the U.S. hadn't even had a single…

July 19 - Start of the Largest Mud Festival in the World!

Posted on July 19, 2019 In 1998, a town in South Korea hosted a Mud Festival to call attention to its mud-based cosmetics. Just a couple of decades later, the Boryeong Mud Festival has gone from a little-known upstart festival to the most popular festival in all of Korea, with thousands of attendees (in 2007, 2.2 million!!!). Umm...a mud festival? Yep! There's everything from colored-mud face painting and mud marathons to mudflats football and a kid-safe mud zone! In Mud Experienceland…

July 17 – Constitution Day in South Korea

Posted on July 17, 2019 There aren't many nations that can point to 500 years of uninterrupted self-rule, but Korea can point to way longer than that - from the late 7th Century (the 600s) until 1910, when Korea was taken over by Japan. That's more than 1,200 years of self-rule!! One portion of that long period is called the Joseon Dynasty, which was founded July 17, 1392. That dynasty ruled for about 500 years, and the auspicious date July 17 was deliberately chosen for the day of adoption…

July 15 – Be a Dork Day

Posted on July 15, 2019 Personally insulting people is a no-good, very bad thing. (If you don't like what someone is saying or doing, tell them so. But be specific: "I don't like it when you do ____" or "I think that's a mean thing to say!" Don't get into personal insults like, "You're so lame!" or "Gosh, you're dumb" or "You're too ugly to talk to me.") And making fun of people, bullying them, taunting them, name-calling - these are horrible, terrible, no-good, very bad things, for sure. A…

July 13 - National Nitrogen Ice Cream Day

Posted on July 13, 2019 The month of July is considered National Ice Cream Month in the United States - no surprise, since it is a very hot month, perfect for chilly treats! But today's special day is puzzling to some - what is NITROGEN ice cream??? You might already know that liquid nitrogen is really, really cold - like, -321 degrees F (-196 degrees C) cold! Science teachers have been using liquid nitrogen to do cool demos like instantly freezing a leaf, rose, or carnation - or freezing a…

July 10 - Don't Step on a Bee Day

Posted on July 10, 2019 Two good reasons NOT to step on a bee: (1) You don't want to be stung. Especially not on your foot. (2) Bees are in trouble. And they are super-duper precious to the world and specifically to humans! I guess I don't have to say anything more about #1. Right? Even if you're not allergic to bee stings (if you are, use your epipen and seek medical help immediately), they swell and they hurt! But, as to #2: You probably know that bees make honey. People love honey! Also…

July 7 - Unity Day in Yemen

Posted on July 7, 2019 The words are awful: civil war. That means that a nation is tearing itself apart, two or more factions of the people fighting one another, spilling blood, grasping for control, power - or maybe striving to right a grievous wrong. In the case of Yemen's 1994 Civil War, there were tensions over religious differences (Shia and Sunni), and there was disagreement about how important Islamic law should be in the nation's laws. There was anger about unfair economic conditions…

July 6 - Statehood Day in Lithuania

Posted on July 6, 2019 Lithuania, like so many other nations, broke away from the USSR in 1990-1991, so I thought "Statehood Day" was the celebration of that event. However, the events that gave rise to modern, independent Lithuanian are celebrated by another holiday: Day of Restitution of Independence of Lithuania, on March 11. (And Lithuania had earlier declared itself independent, at the end of World War I, on February 16, 1918, giving rise to yet another patriotic holiday: Day of…

July 5 - Independence Day in Cape Verde

Posted on July 5, 2019 10 volcanic islands. 350 miles off the coast of Africa, in the Atlantic Ocean. (That translates to roughly 570 km.) 0 population until 1456, when Portuguese navigators first discovered the islands. #1 permanent settlement by Europeans within the tropics. 1000s and 1000s of enslaved people passing through from Africa to the Americas. 7 different times Cidade Velho (then called Ribiera Grande) was destroyed by pirates - including twice by Sir Francis Drake. (Yes, Drake…

July 2 - Independence Day in Bahia (Brazil)

Posted on July 2, 2019 Brazil's Independence Day is September 7. But in the Brazilian state of Bahia, an equally important independence day is celebrated today! Dom Pedro I Brazil's "Liberator," Dom Pedro I, had declared independence from Portugal for all of Brazil on September 7, 1822. That's strange, actually, because Pedro was born in Lisbon, Portugal, the fourth son of the King of Portugal. When Pedro was around nine years old, France invaded Portugal, and the royal family fled to…