December 2024 US Calendar: Full List of Holidays and Celebrations
Winter holidays like Chanukah, Kwanza, and Christmas arrive in December. Families get together during this time in the comfort of their own homes. During the month, we focus on kindness and peace in our thoughts and deeds. December, the twelfth and last month of the year, spurs on a flurry of activity in our personal and professional lives. While we focus on the future, events like sales, shopping, family get-togethers, school breaks, baking, and seasonal changes serve as a reminder of the past.
However, December is not so dull, serene, or hectic that you can’t enjoy yourself at all. A touch of whimsy is added by holidays like National Ding-A-Ling Day, Answer the Phone Like Buddy the Elf Day, and Ugly Sweater Day.
For many people, December is a big baking month. Families, churches, schools, and other institutions bake cookies as a form of exchange. They frequently participate in the ugly sweater and gift-giving events that take place immediately before or during Chanukah, Kwanza, and Christmas.
Winter sports are in full swing in December. Fans fill arenas or tune in, indoors or out. Every year, the sports seasons of basketball, football, and hockey provide excitement, but skiing and snowmobiling also occupy the outdoors.
The December holidays offer a plethora of opportunities to celebrate our leisure time, in addition to sports. One way to kill time is to take some time to yourself on National Crossword Puzzle Day. The kitchen is also a place of celebration with the abundance of baking and food days. In addition to the well-known beverage holidays, December actually has 29 days dedicated to food. We can even use National Sock Day to celebrate our laundry.
December 1st is the annual World AIDS Day. The purpose of the day is to pay tribute to everyone who has died from HIV/AIDS and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). Along with increasing public awareness of the pandemic and the virus’s spread, it also tries to dispel myths about AIDS by teaching people how to prevent and manage the illness.
01 SUN National Day of Christmas Lights
02 MONDAY The International Day to Abolish Slavery
Every year on December 2nd, we celebrate National Mutt Day, which is also known as National Mixed Breed Dog Day. It raises awareness of the need for loving homes and affection for mixed-breed dogs while also celebrating their distinctive appearances and personalities. It also draws attention to the millions of mixed-breed dogs that are up for adoption in shelters.
Due to people’s preference for purebred and designer dogs, mixed breed dogs are the most common breed to end up in shelters or be abandoned. Given that approximately 80% of dogs in American shelters are mixed breeds, National Mutt Day is observed on December 2nd and July 31st of each year in an effort to generate as much awareness as possible.
One of the most significant days in the American shopping calendar is Cyber Monday, which falls on the Monday following Thanksgiving. Originally, the phrase “Cyber Monday” referred to the American custom of spending Thanksgiving Day at home shopping for goods and merchandise. Retailers would support the trend by introducing deals and discounts during this seasonal period. Cyber Monday deals are available in practically all online stores, and the term has grown in importance for retailers to the point where it is now as well-known and used globally as Black Friday.
The Tuesday following American Thanksgiving is designated as Giving Tuesday. The day falls during the beginning of the holiday shopping season. There are sales and exclusive offers in stores everywhere.
Giving Tuesday brings attention to the value of charitable giving and supporting those in need while serving as a gentle reminder to pause and consider those who are less fortunate.
• You can give money by making a donation to Giving Tuesday, or you can give your time by volunteering. If you are able, you can also set up a recurring donation.
• You can always donate toys that your kids have outgrown or clothing that you and your family no longer wear if you don’t have the time to volunteer or can’t donate money right now.
By posting information about #GivingTuesday on your Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and even in group chats with your family and friends, you can encourage others to follow your example and help spread the word.
Giving Tuesday is a great opportunity to help others in any way we can. Even a small amount of assistance can make a big difference in the world.
04 WED Tuesday International Day of People with Disabilities
04 WED: World Wildlife Day
Every year on December 3rd, the United Nations observes International Day of Persons with Disabilities. It promotes the rights of individuals with disabilities and increases awareness of the ways in which disabilities impact people politically, socially, and economically. By educating people about what it’s like to live with a disability, it also seeks to protect the wellbeing and dignity of those who are disabled.
Every year on December 4, we celebrate National Cookie Day. Whether it’s a birthday, wedding, graduation, party, picnic, or any other kind of celebration, cookies are a must-have item. This comfort food is available in a plethora of shapes, sizes, colors, and flavor combinations.
Around the world, a wide variety of cookies have developed over time. This comprises sandwich cookies, filled cookies, rolled or cutout cookies, pressed cookies, molded cookies, no-bake cookies, fried cookies, and cookies that can be kept in the fridge or ice box.
05 THU The Ninja’s Day
December 5 is International Volunteer Day, a United Nations observance also known as the International Volunteer Day for Economic and Social Development. It is observed globally.
On this day, volunteer organizations and the people who volunteer for them are recognized and honored for their efforts. Additionally, it’s a chance for volunteers to highlight their national and international service as well as their local community work and inspire others to get involved.
05 THU National Day of Repeal
05 THU World Soil Day
06 FRI St. Nicholas Day
The first Friday in December is National Bartender Day, so let’s honor and celebrate our bartenders. It will be observed on Friday, December 1st, this year.
Bartender Appreciation Day and National Bartender Day are other names for it. In addition to serving drinks, a bartender usually makes their patrons feel happy by listening to them, becoming friends with them, and creating wonderful bonds.
Bartenders must also watch over patrons to ensure that everyone is acting appropriately and safely. It is understandable that bartenders have a special day to honor them since it is an extremely difficult job that requires someone special to perform.
06 FRI International Gazpacho Day
06 FRI Day of the Miners
The day is also referred to as Pearl Harbor Day and Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day. In the Pacific War (World War II) that followed the attacks, it also honors efforts made.
Although it is a federal holiday, Pearl Harbor Day is not a federal holiday. Standard working hours are observed by businesses, mail services, and federal offices.
07 SAT International Day of Civil Aviation
07 SAT National Day of Writing Letters
People celebrate Candle Day on the first Saturday in December each year. The well-known American company “Bath and Body Works” is the one who organized the event.
Ever since its inception, the day has grown to be a major occasion for all. Today is Bath and Body Works’ annual candle sale, during which the retailer offers a fantastic discount on their well-known 3-wick candles. The sale runs for two or three days in-store and for one day on their websites.
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07 SAT World Pear Day.
07 SAT National Cotton Candy Day.
08 SUN Day of the Precious Conception
We honor National Brownie Day on December 8, which is the ideal combination of cake and cookie! Whether they are blondies or chocolate brownies, nobody can resist the gooey decadence of a brownie.
There is a brownie for everyone thanks to the countless recipes and variations. So go ahead and treat yourself to this delectable dessert on this day, whether it’s homemade or from your favorite bakery.
Although National Brownie Day is not a recognized holiday in the US, some companies are offering free brownies on this day. Thus, remember to check out your neighborhood bakeries and reward yourself!
The second Monday in December is known as “Green Monday,” a day set aside for shopping. It encourages people to shop online, much like Cyber Monday, Black Friday, and Prime Day. With numerous websites offering discounts and deals, its popularity has grown over time.
Due to its name, a lot of people mistake it for an eco-friendly holiday, but in actuality, it’s the best day of the year to shop online in December as last-minute Christmas shoppers arrive. To get customers to buy from them, a number of retail behemoths, including Amazon, Target, and Walmart, among others, offer Green Monday deals.
09 MON National Llama Day
09 MON International Day Against Corruption
09 MON International Day of Remembrance and Honoring the Genocide Victims’ Dignity
09 MON Holiday Cards
09 MON National Pastry Day
Every year on December 10, the United Nations observes Human Rights Day as an international holiday. This day attempts to raise global awareness of human rights and inspire everyone, wherever they may be in the world, to speak up and defend their rights.
Additionally, it honors the anniversary of the December 10, 1948, adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Human Rights Day has a new theme every year, as is customary with UN holidays. ‘Consolidating and Sustaining Human Rights Culture into the Future’ is the theme for Human Rights Day in 2023. It will be the 75th Human Rights Day in 2023.
10 TUE Dewey Decimal System Day
10 TUE Nobel Prize Day
10 TUE Truman International Day for Animal Rights
11 WED International Day of the Mountains
11 WED UNICEF Day.
12 THU Our Lady of Guadalupe’s Feast
12 THU Gingerbread House Day
12 THU National Day of Poinsettias
12 THU International Day of Neutrality: 12th of Thu
12 THU World Health Day (International Day of Universalism)
Every year on December 13, people celebrate National Day of the Horse, which is also occasionally referred to as National Horse Day. This is not just a day for horse lovers and equestrians. It seeks to showcase all of the ways that horses have historically benefited American society, both culturally and economically.
Since the founding of the nation, horses have been deeply ingrained in American history and have been essential to the development of civilization. This includes transportation, assistance in combat and hunting, clearing land and forests for agricultural use, and ranch-level livestock herding.
On December 13, people nationwide commemorate the founding of the United States of America. The National Guard. Since its founding in 1636, the National Guard has been a part of the US Army. It is made up of citizen soldiers who offer their services to their country whenever needed.
Every State has both of the National Guard’s two branches, the Army and the Air Force.
The National Guard Birthday is a significant day in American history. Army, but since it’s not a federal holiday, companies and schools are open as usual.
13 FRI Day of the Salesperson
13 FRIDAY International Violin Day
13 FRI National Day of Cocoa
14 SAT Monkey Day
14 SAT: National Day of Free Shipping
December 15th is National Cupcake Day, so cupcake lovers can indulge in their guilt-free treats on that day.
These tiny cakes that fit in the palm of your hand can be the ultimate treat when they are covered in frosting or sprinkles and come in any flavor you can imagine.
Since the 19th century, cupcakes have been a mainstay of weddings, office parties, birthday celebrations, bake sales, and every other celebration in America. People just can’t get enough of them. Look for the ideal cupcake at the bakeries in your neighborhood on this particular day!
America loves cupcakes so much that a single day was insufficient to honor them. October 18 is also recognized as Chocolate Cupcake Day.
Every year on December 15, people celebrate Bill of Rights Day. The first ten amendments to the US Constitution are known as the Bill of Rights. Its goal is to outline the rights and personal freedoms of Americans.
The collectively referred to as the Bill of Rights, these amendments serve as the nation’s guardians of liberty, preserving individual freedoms.
First drafted on September 25, 1789, the Bill of Rights was subsequently ratified on December 15, 1791. For this reason, today is designated as Bill of Rights Day.
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15 SUN National Day to Wear Pearls
The world celebrates Las Posadas, a beloved custom for Latin American and Hispanic communities, from December 16 to December 24.
The nine-day event illustrates the values of harmony, hospitality, and faith by depicting Mary and Joseph’s journey to Bethlehem in search of refuge.
Communities gather for nightly celebrations that retell the Nativity story over the course of these nine days, creating a tapestry of enduring customs and memories.
Las Posadas, a well-known and vibrant prelude to Christmas, is a magical realm elevated by cuisine, music, and group spirit.
16 MON National Covered Anything with Chocolate Day
17 TUE Wright Brothers Day
17 TUE Pan Day of American Aviation
17 TUE: National Day of Maple Syrup
18 WED: Treat Every Call Like Buddy the Elf Day
18 WED is International Day of Migrants.
19THU: National Day of Emo
20 FRI International Day of Human Solidarity
The third Friday of December is National Ugly Sweater Day, which is also known as National Ugly Christmas Sweater Day. The holiday is scheduled for December 15, 2023. Ugly Christmas Sweaters, which were once laughed at, have recently gained acceptance and become a cultural phenomenon.
Wear your ugliest Christmas sweater for the entire day on this day. Consider adding lights, tinsel, bells, or tacky designs. Consider holding a contest amongst friends and family members to determine who can locate the most hideous sweater.
20 FRI The Day of the Underdog
Every year on the Winter Solstice, or December 21st, the shortest day of the year, the pagan holiday known as Yule is observed.
The twelve days between the winter solstice and the start of the solar year are considered to be a very sacred time that does not belong to either the old or new year, which is why the celebration lasts for twelve days.
Yule is a season of giving thanks for the natural world, the changing of the seasons, and the ultimate victory of light over darkness. Its origins are found in antiquated paganism.
Yule is also known as Yuletide, and the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ that we now call Christmas has multiple cultural roots.
Germanic tribes, Vikings, and other pre-Christian groups celebrated Yule, a pagan holiday. This festival was first held to commemorate the winter solstice.
21 SAT Winter Solstice
21 SAT Observes National Wreaths Throughout America Day
21 SAT: National Day of Crossword Puzzles
December 21st is National Short Girl Appreciation Day each year. Given that it is the first day of winter and the shortest day of the year, there isn’t a more ideal occasion to celebrate! The focus of this day is to honor the short women in your life.
Although short women are often underestimated, their petite stature belies their powerful presence. Although they occasionally might require assistance to reach the higher cabinets, short girls can possess the same fierceness, tenacity, and self-assurance as their taller counterparts.
Since women are typically shorter than men, there is a day set aside to honor short girls. But National Short Person Day is now observed on December 22, the day after, so that nobody feels left out.
21 SAT See Things Positively
22 SUN National Day of Short People
Festivus, a new and expanding event on the calendar with its own set of customs and rituals, is more than just a secular celebration of Christmas on December 23rd.
The American sitcom Seinfeld made the event famous in the episode titled The Strike (Season 9, Episode 10).
It is introduced and explained to be a less commercial celebration and an alternative to Christmas.
Since that episode first aired on December 16th, 1997, and particularly in the last 5 years, the celebration has gained traction with the public.
It is now widely celebrated among those who believe Christmas has become too commercial, or who do not wish to celebrate Christmas because of their faith/beliefs.
23 MON National Roots Day
Amidst the chilly winter days, there comes a night called Christmas Eve celebrated every year on December 24th that warms our hearts and souls filling the air with sense of wonder.
Christmas Eve is observed in the evening of December 24, but officially it is the whole day before Christmas Day. It is a time when air glitters with hope and the streets are decorated beautifully with twinkling lights marking the beginning of Christmas.
In some states, it is a public holiday. Schools are normally closed. However, for the majority it is not a holiday, so most people have to work.
As it is the day before the holidays, many workplaces hold Christmas parties or allow their employees to leave work early. Stores are usually open, however, opening times may be affected. Grocery stores, in particular, may close early. Some people use Christmas Eve for last-minute Christmas shopping.
24 TUE The Feast of the Seven Fishes
25 WED Christmas Day
The famous Christmas Day dinner can vary according to the region and culture. Typical dishes on the menu are turkey, ham, goose, pork, jambalaya, and “seven fish” salad. Side dishes include mashed potatoes, roasted root vegetables, stuffing, gravy, and cranberry sauce. All of this is followed by desserts such as flan, fruit pies, cookies, cakes, and Christmas pudding. Some typical seasonal drinks are eggnog, cider, mulled wine, punch, and hot chocolate.
Entertainment activities include ballets, old movies on TV, and carol singing. In some local communities, nativity plays, pageants, concerts, performances, and tree-lighting ceremonies often take place. Towns and churches are decorated with nativity scenes incorporating baby Jesus, Mary, Joseph, animals, shepherds, and angels.
Church events and services
Churches hold Christmas Eve candlelit or midnight services. Carol singers go from house to house. People decorate their homes with lights and displays outside and light their Christmas trees and other decorations inside. Children especially look forward to receiving gifts on Christmas morning, with Santa Claus having come down the chimney to deliver them the night before. Some people volunteer to help out at homeless shelters or engage in other charitable work.
The Christmas shopping period starts with Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving. Retailers begin their push for sales, as Christmas purchases bring in approximately $1 trillion. Almost 17 million cards and packages are sent across the States.
Hanukkah , also known as Chanukah is a Jewish festival lasting eight days. In the Hebrew calendar, Hanukkah starts on the 25th of Kislev, which corresponds to the time frame between late November and December in the Gregorian Calendar.
In 2024, the first day of Hanukkah begins at sundown on Wednesday, December 25th, and ends at sundown on Thursday, January 2nd, 2025.
This holiday commemorated the Maccabean Revolt when Jews fought against their oppressors during the second century BC.
Hanukkah is not a public holiday in the United States, so businesses and schools remain open.
26 THU Kwanzaa
Boxing Day is usually the day after Christmas Day, and so it is most often December 26th. As such it is part of the Christmas celebration and the ongoing festivities. In the UK it is a bank holiday and so businesses and some shops will be shut. This is not the case in America, and parts of Canada, where shops and businesses remain open with normal working hours. In most of the world, December 26th does not have a special name other than being known as the second day of Christmas.
In years when Christmas Day is a Saturday, Boxing Day is traditionally celebrated on Monday the 27th instead, and the 26th is referred to as Christmas Sunday. This occurred last in 2021 and will be the case next in 2027, 2032, and then 2038. Many shops and businesses however continue to refer to Sunday as Boxing Day, even though the Bank Holiday officially takes place on Monday.
27 FRI No Interruptions Day
27 FRI International Day of Epidemic Preparedness
28 SAT National Card Playing Day
28 SAT National Short Film Day
28 SAT Pledge of Allegiance Day
28 SAT National Call a Friend Day
28 SAT National Download Day
29 SUN Wounded Knee
29 SUN Still Need To Do Day
National Bacon Day is celebrated on December 30th every year to celebrate one of the most delicious foods in the world. Be it for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or a snack, the popularity of bacon remains unmatched.
It is a favorite amongst people of all age groups and can be paired with almost everything like eggs, chicken, burgers, pancakes, salads, and even drinks.
In fact, some people love bacon so much that the industry for bacon products has skyrocketed in the last few years, you can even get bacon-scented soap and candles.
So, if you are a bacon lover, heat up your frying pan and light your bacon-scented candle, this day is for you!
31 TUE New Year’s Eve
Every year the Times Square Ball – a crystal ball with a 12-foot diameter and weighing almost 12,000 pounds, atop a flagpole on One Times Square – descends 77 feet in 60 seconds, to rest at the bottom, at midnight. It is counted down by the spectators, and millions also watch on TV. Other cities also raise or lower replicas or real objects during the last minute of the year. E.g. In Atlanta, Georgia, they use a giant peach.
Because of its licentious rites, New Year’s Eve celebrations were not deemed appropriate behavior, especially by religious communities. Influenced by a shift in thinking about religion, modern literature, and immigrants’ customs, by the end of the 19th century, people were looking for more occasions for families to celebrate together.
In the 1870s, several holidays, including New Year’s Day, were recognized as federal holidays. At the beginning of the 20th century, celebrations started to happen all over America. The first Time Square ball drop happened in 1907.
With New Year’s being the popular holiday that it is, there are many movies inspired by the date. Perhaps among the most notable are New Year’s Eve (2011), About Time (2013), and perhaps the most iconic film of all, When Harry Met Sally (1989).
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