Celebrated around the world on March 25th, Tolkien Reading Day is a favorite among fans of the renowned author.
J.R.R. Tolkien (Jan. 3, 1892 – Sept. 2, 1973) was an English writer, poet, philologist, and university professor. He was best known as the author of the classic works The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings and The Silmarrillion as well as Roverandom and Farmer Giles of Ham. However, he has published more than 30 books, several posthumously. The author has sold more than 150 million copies of The Lord of the Rings trilogy and that number continues to grow.
The day encourages readers of all ages to explore the writings of J.R.R. Tolkien and learn more about the author. With over 30 published works, he had a lot to say and not just about hobbits, though many are on medieval order.
HOW TO OBSERVE #TolkienReadingDay
Can you doodle like Tolkien? Check out the video below. He was an avid crossword puzzler, too. While reading Tolkien’s amazing adventures, learn more about the master. Take out your markers and pens. Draw up the creatures or doodle an amazing realm from your imagination. What will you create?
Here are other ways to participate from home:
- Create your own map of Middle Earth.
- Download and print this Tolkien word search puzzle. Can you find all the Middle Earth words?
- As you’re reading one of Tolkien’s books, make a list of all the new words you encounter.
Read some of Tolkien’s works and use #TolkienReadingDay to post on social media. For Lord of the Rings books and movies click here.
TOLKIEN READING DAY HISTORY
The Tolkien Society created this observance in 2003 to encourage the readings of J.R.R. Tolkien. They chose the date of March 25th because it matches the fall of Sauron in Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings.
International Women’s Day on March 8th each year celebrates the social, economic, and political achievements of women around the world. The day also brings international awareness to gender parity. According to the World Economic Forum, global gender equality is estimated to be achieved by 2133.
Gender equality is the equal access to the same rights and opportunities regardless of gender. These rights and opportunities include:
- employment / economic gain
- protection under the law
- right to vote
- free from violence
Striving for Change
Holding Political Office
Just over 100 years ago, only .2 % of the United States Congress consisted of women. Actually, the 65th Congress was comprised of a single woman. In 1916, Montana elected Republican Jeannette Rankin as the first Congresswoman to hold a federal office. Fast forward to the year 2020 and women hold 23.7% of the U.S. Congressional seats. While that might seem like progress, according to United Nations statistics, the U.S. percentage matches exactly the worldwide average for women in political office.
In many parts of the world, women are less likely to own land, a business, or attend school. Education alone is a powerful tool leading to financial independence for women. Their children reap the rewards, often for generations to come. Additionally, but when the women of a community prosper, so does the community. Educated women and girls are more likely to educate their offspring. They also have a better understanding of healthcare and understand their rights.
According to the United Nations, more than half of the world’s poorest people are women. International Women’s Day strives to bring economic power to women who aren’t allowed to work for pay or work for low wages. And despite strides in industrialized countries, there’s still work to do there, too.
HOW TO OBSERVE #InternationalWomensDay
Around the world, organizations, communities, and individuals organize events focused on the mission of gender parity, celebrating the achievements of women worldwide and education.
- Attend a lecture, seminar or festival
- Organize an event
- Speak or perform at a local fundraiser
- Participate in a march for women’s equal rights
- Learn about the women who paved the way for many of the rights and freedoms we have today
- Become involved in your local, state or national political system
- Invite others to join you, including other women, sons, brothers, sisters, and daughters
- Share your job skills at a local career fair
- Celebrate all month long. It’s also National Women’s History Month.
Use #InternationalWomensDay when posting on Social Media.
Besides tagging your photographs and post with these has tags, you can also do the following:
• Share content or retweet amessage that might be relevant to the theme of International Women’s Day 2020
• You can use thelogo of the international women day on your blog, website or on your Facebook’s cover photo. Alternatively, you can also use the IWD logo in your email signatures
• The official colour of International Women’s Day is purple. You can wear a purple shirt to work, use purple in your websites, blogs or social media. You can also make a video or presentation on the theme of International Women’s Day 2018 and post it on your social media account to raise awareness about the different issues that women from different backgrounds all over the world are forced to fight everyday.
INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY HISTORY
International Women’s Day origins can be traced back to the early 1900s when women became more politically active and took an invested and vocal role in steering their course toward voting rights, fair pay, working conditions, and representation under the law
On March 1st, the Land of 10,000 Lakes is recognized on National Minnesota Day.
The 32nd state to join the union shares its northern border with Canada.
Angle Township on the north edge of Lake of the Woods makes Minnesota the northernmost state of the continental forty-eight. Also known as the Gopher State, it extends along the northern shore of Lake Superior.
Dakota Sioux and Ojibwa, Menominee, and other tribes populated the area when the first Europeans began to explore and later settle the area. Fur trading in the densely wooded territory led to French treaties in the late 17th century.
The Mississippi River divides a portion of the state; its source is Lake Itasca. This natural boundary also divided the region when the Treaty of Paris determined United States’ western border after the Revolutionary War. Minnesota would not become whole until 1836 when it became part of the Wisconsin Territory, 33 years following the Louisana Purchase.
The state capital of St. Paul, once called Pig’s Eye Landing, was founded in 1838 along the Mississippi River and was named the territorial capital in 1849. Minnesota became the 32nd state in 1858.
Just upriver from St. Paul, Minneapolis formed from Ft. Snelling, built in 1819.
Today, the metropolis spans both sides of the river for nearly 60 square miles. Downtown Minneapolis includes the world’s most extensive uninterrupted network of indoor pedestrian pathways. The skyway system boasts eight miles connecting restaurants, shopping, businesses, hotels and apartment complexes.
Head north along Lake Superior into the Arrowhead Region where the air stays cooler longer and lake effect will have real meaning. Duluth and points north with an industrial history benefit from mild summers, access to clear summer nights, Aurora Borealis and unspoiled views.
HOW TO OBSERVE #NationalMinnesotaDay
From the founders of the Mayo clinic to the creators of inline skates and cheerleading, Minnesotans find time to create, explore and celebrate. Tour the cities or 10,000 lakes and all the history in between!
Don’t forget National Pig Day, also today.
Use #NationalMinnesotaDay to share on social media.
ART – NATURE – HISTORY
For a complete list of Minnesota State and National Parks & Historic Sites visit www.dnr.state.mn.us/state_parks
Check out a few of the featured sites around the state below.
Charles Eastman – Physician – (February 19, 1858 – January 8, 1939)
Charles and William Mayo – Physicians – (June 29, 1861 – July 28, 1939 & July 19, 1865 – May 26, 1939)
Sinclair Lewis – Author – (February 7, 1885 – January 10, 1951)
Richard W. Sears – Businessman – (December 7, 1863 – September 28, 1914)
Fred Quimby – Producer – (July 31, 1886 – September 16, 1965)
F. Scott Fitzgerald – Author – (September 24, 1896 – December 21, 1940)
Wanda Gág – Artist – (March 11, 1893 – June 27, 1946)
Walter Breuning – Super centenarian – (September 21, 1896 – April 14, 2011)
Richard Gurley Drew – Inventor – (June 22, 1899 – December 14, 1980)
Robert Mondavi – Businessman – (June 18, 1913 – May 16, 2008)
Toni Stone – Baseball Player – (July 17, 1921 – November 2, 1996)
Judy Garland – Performing Artist – (June 10, 1922 – June 22, 1969)
Charles Schultz – Cartoonist – (November 26, 1922 – February 12, 2000)
Roger Maris – Baseball – (September 10, 1934 – December 14, 1985)
John Madden – NFL Coach – (April 10, 1936-)
Bob Dylan – Singer-songwriter – (May 24, 1941 -)
Ann Bancroft – Explorer (September 29, 1955 – )
Prince Rogers Nelson – Singer-songwriter – (June 7, 1958 – April 21, 2016)
The last day of Carnival and the day before for Ash Wednesday, Fat Tuesday is the intertwining of a period festivals and feasts that lead to a time of fasting and reflection. Also known as Shrove Tuesday and Mardi Gras, this enduring celebration has many traditions and deep roots around the world.
Mardi Gras (French for Fat Tuesday) dates back to an ancient Roman festival honoring the deities Lupercalia and Saturnalia which took place in mid-February. When Christians arrived in Rome, they incorporated the festival into Lenten preparations.
For centuries, this solemn feast prepared Christians for the season of Lent and used up valuable meat and supplies they would be abstaining from in the days to come. Traditions surrounding the day have changed through the ages. Through time and culture, the practices of Lent and Carnival, Mardi Gras, and Shrove Tuesday have varied and become incorporated into regional customs.
In the United Kingdom, Shrove Tuesday is also known as Pancake Day. Pancakes are the perfect menu item when the future includes abstaining from fats, eggs, and sweets! In Russia, they celebrate the entire week during Shrovetide as Pancake Week.
Carnival & Mardi Gras
While the French didn’t originate the medieval feast, they did put their stamp on it. From parades to beignets and colorful masks, the last day of Carnival is full of elaborate costumes and lavish food sure to hold the revelers over through a long fast. During the 16th century, their ancestors celebrated Boeuf Gras (fatted calf) which included a tradition of parading a bull decorated with flowers through the city. The decorated animal is followed through the streets by a retinue of colorfully dressed attendants and bands playing unusual instruments. There was even a Boeuf Gras Society in Mobile, Alabama at one time. (See history below for more information.)
New Orleans holds the crown for Carnival and Mardi Gras celebrations in the United States. While the city is filled with French flavor and style, its culture is an eclectic infusion of many cultures. Colorful King Cake and thick, savory muffuletta sandwiches only suggest the indulgence possible on Fat Tuesday. Regional specialties like Etouffee, Po’boys, and jambalaya all add to the atmosphere of the day.
And while we satisfy our cravings, let’s not forget our beverages. Signature creations from New Orleans hit the spot. Be sure to try the Sazerac made with absinthe or the citrus cocktail Arnaud’s Special. For a smooth drink with some punch mix up a Vieux Carré made with whiskey, cognac, and sweet vermouth. But you don’t have to have a cocktail to enjoy the feast! Fat Tuesday has plenty of beverages full of refreshing flavor. Coffees, sodas, and shakes of every flavor can be found.
HOW TO OBSERVE #FatTuesday
Join in festivals around the country or have your own Fat Tuesday feast! Share your favorite traditions by using #FatTuesday, #MardiGras, #ShroveTuesday
In Pensacola as we are so close to both Mobile, AL and New Orleans, there are lots of pardades, parties, balls, and more. Get ready for beads, dancing, and King Cake.
At the end of the fun try coming home to my Crockpot New England Calm Chowder. As today this dish is celebrated nationwide today too.
FAT TUESDAY HISTORY
The roots of the celebration have been woven together for centuries from medieval spring festivals and feasts that were based on the Christian calendar. Fat Tuesday is celebrated around the world in its various forms all of which harken back to these roots of spring festivals and religious fasting in preparation for the Holy day of Easter.
Credit for bringing Mardi Gras to America goes to French explorers Pierre Le Moyne Sieur d’Iberville and Jean Baptiste Le Moyne Sieur de Bienville. In 1699, d’Iberville reached the mouth of the river on Shrove Tuesday near what is now Louisiana and named it Pointe du Mardi Gras.
Thanks to their establishment of Fort Louis de la Mobile, modern-day Mobile, Alabama lays claim to the first Mardi Gras celebration on American soil in 1703.
When de Bienville established Nouvelle Orleans in 1788, Mardi Gras celebrations reportedly began immediately. In 1875, Louisiana declared Fat Tuesday an official holiday
On February 19, National Vet Girls ROCK Day recognizes the immense dedication of the nearly 2 million U.S. veteran women.
On National Vet Girls ROCK Day, not only is it a day to recognize women veterans, but it’s a day for women veterans to support one another and to share resources, build relationships and spread awareness concerning the needs of women veterans
The willingness of America’s [Women] veterans to sacrifice for our country has earned them our lasting gratitude. ~Jeff Miller
Since the Revolutionary War, women have served in the armed forces, and many have not been recognized for their service. Today, the contributions of nearly 2 million women veterans deserve acknowledgment. National Vet Girls ROCK Day celebrates the bonds they formed and their experiences through military service.
While we can never truly repay the debt we owe our heroes, the least we should do for our brave veterans is to ensure that the government takes a proactive approach to delivering the services and benefits they have earned, so they can access the care they need and so richly deserve. ~Kirsten Gillibrand
Like thousands of military personnel, support transitioning from military to civilian life develops both their professional and personal success. Honoring their accomplishments, skills, and essential contributions both in the military and civilian fields elevate the place of the woman veteran to her proper position.
From the world wars of Europe to the jungles of the Far East, from the deserts of the Middle East to the African continent, and even here in our own hemisphere, our “women” veterans have made the world a better place and America the great country we are today. ~ John Hoeven
HOW TO OBSERVE
Connect with other women veterans for camaraderie and support on National Vet Girls ROCK Day. Join a VGR meetup at various designated restaurant locations throughout the United States and affirm your support of women veterans.
Tell us about your favorite woman veteran and use #VetGirlsROCKDay to share on social media. Follow AVWA and VGR on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for upcoming AVWA and VGR events. (@avwaorg and @VetGirlsRock1)
Vet Girls Rock founded National Vet Girls Rock Day on February 19, 2019, to bring awareness to the contributions of women veterans to the United States military and to provide an opportunity for women veterans to celebrate the bonds they formed during their service.
The Registrar at National Day Calendar proclaimed National Vet Girls Day to be observed annually on February 19.
You can also celebrate NATIONAL CHOCOLATE MINTD DAY as well. Better yet make it a point to give chocolate covered mints like York, or Andes to as many female veterans as you can find.
About Vet Girls Rock
Vet Girls ROCK, an initiative under Active Veterans With Answers, founded in 2017, Vet Girls ROCK serves as a resource and knowledge stream for women veterans. With the struggles of transitioning from military to civilian life; Vet Girls ROCK was created to educate, enlighten, and support women veterans through professional and personal growth that improves awareness, potential, and identify talents. Women veterans who miss that camaraderie can find it in Vet Girls ROCK.
The entire month of February is dedicated to the people who love whole buildings devoted to the reading, housing, organizing, categorizing, finding, studying and otherwise loving books. It’every s National Library Lover’s Month!
Check out some of these fantastic Authors and their books. I’ve said for years “Hollywood needs a library card. Guess someone finally heard me. ” They currently have Movies or series based on the books.
There are lots of great authors and books I cannot begin to list them all here. Make sure you bookmark and like our site for more.
Libraries provide so much more than a place for us to enjoy great novels or to discover amazing adventures and untold history. Yes, they help us ace our research papers and provide a quiet space to study, but they do so much more.
For preschoolers, libraries entertain them with theater and hands-on activities exposing them to music, art and their first friendships. Many communities rely on their libraries for meeting space for public forums, socials, fundraisers and classes.
Libraries lend not only books but music and movies. Rotating art displays give local artists exposure to the community. Larger libraries provide preservation services, preserving some of the most treasured books, periodicals and documents for future generations.
HOW TO OBSERVE
Continue enjoying your library, but consider volunteering your time, too. If you don’t have a library card, it’s never too late! Visit your library to get one! Use #NationalLibraryLoversDay to share on social media.
Of course, if you’re even a fraction addicted to books as I am you may have to start your own library. Mine is currently occupying four bookshelves with some still boxed. Since I like to reread mine I use them frequently. As I usually read a full novel in about two days I have to carry a small ton from my local library or draw from my own. I wish ereaders had been around when I started.
If you want to pass this gift to others February 14th is also International Book Giving Day.
National Florida Day on January 25 recognizes the 27th state to join the United States.
The Sunshine State is home to the oldest established city in the country. With over 400 years of history, St. Augustine’s streets and colonial architecture have stories to tell. Founded by Spanish explorers in 1565, visit the city and walk in the same footsteps as 16th-century bishops, ponder the escapades of pirates and the whereabouts of lost gold and learn about the lives of European settlers.
East and West Florida became the 14th and 15th British Colonies after the end of the French and Indian War in 1763. However, in 1783, after the end of the American Revolutionary War, The Treaty of Paris returned Florida to Spain.
The present-day borders of Florida were absorbed through two transactions: The Louisianna Purchase in 1803 brought East Florida with it (but not without dispute from the French) and through a U.S. intervention in an uprising in West Florida in 1812 causing West Florida to join the Mississippi Territory.
With an average high temperature of 79.5°F, it should be no surprise that Floridian John Gorrie brought refrigeration and air conditioning to the world in 1851.
Add to that, more than half the year with partly cloudy to sunny days, the invention of sunblock would be a necessity, too. Hungary born pharmacist, Benjamin Green, invented a sunscreen in 1944 which later became a tanning lotion known as Coppertone.
Launching astronauts into space, Cape Canaveral and the Kennedy Space Center in Brevard Country, is a fun and unique visit. While Disney, Universal, and others have rides, themes, and shows. This place makes both history and the future a tangible experience. We just happened to be there on a day they launched a new satellite!
Cape Canaveral and the home of the Kennedy Space Center in Brevard County has come a long way from its first launch in 1950. From Appollo missions to Hubble Telescopes and Mars Rovers, Cape Canaveral continues missions well into the future. Missions include commercial ventures including SpaceX launches.
Florida offers more than enough to do and see. From man-made worlds and relaxing beaches to long, colorful and intricate history, the Sunshine State’s open spaces and sunny faces require more than one visit.
HOW TO OBSERVE
Join National Day Calendar as we dig into Florida’s sunny beaches and rich history. Seek buried treasures and explore all Florida’s fascinating culture! Look to the past or look to the future and use #NationalFloridaDay to share on social media.
In 2017, National Day Calendar began celebrating each state in the order they entered the union starting the week of Independence Day and ending with Hawaii. We highlight a small part of each states’ history, foods and the people who make up the state. There’s so much more to explore!
Florida is also home of the oldest noncontinuous settlement in America. The City of five flags know as Pensacola is actually older than St Augustine. The original settlement was wiped out by a hurricane. So St Augustine claims the oldest continuous city.
Pensacola has a long Naval Tradition and is The Cradle of Naval Aviation. Every year both resident and visiting pilots, take training at one of our local bases. While NAS Pensacola is home to The Famous Blue Angels Squadron that Flew over The White House recently, we made national news for a tragic event just a short time ago.
We had an active shooter who infiltrated and murdered students at the flight school here. While we deeply morn those lost in this tragedy, we are grateful to the brave who helped our sheriff’s officers put an early end to this shooter. Before more could be harmed these warriors risked life and injury to subdue the shooter. Since this event the bases have gone to restricted access to keep others and the community safe.
For more information about us ask a local. Here are some of my picks, and I haven’t even come close to listing them all.
T.H. Stone Memorial St. Joseph Peninsula State Park – St. Joseph Stephen Foster Folk Culture Center – Mayo Manatee Springs State Park – Chiefland Colt Creek State Park – Lakeland Highlands Hammock State Park – Sebring Kissimmee Prairie Preserve State Park – Okeechobee Don Pedro Island State Park – Cape Haze Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park – Naples Hugh Taylor Birch State Park – Ft. Lauderdale Big Cypress National Preserve – Ochopee Canaveral National Seashore – Titusville & New Smyrna Beach Everglades National Park – Miami, Naples & Homestead MUSEUMS Salvador Dali Museum – St. Petersburg Museum of Florida History – Tallahassee John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art – Sarasota Castillo de San Marcos – St. Augustine Bok Tower Gardens – Lake Wales Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse – Ponce Inlet Villa Vizcaya – Miami
A civil rights activist and composer, James Weldon Johnson became United States consul to Puerto Cabello in Venezuela under President Theodore Roosevelt. He is also noted for composing the song Lift Every Voice and Sing.