Have you ever heard the expression “every day is a holiday”? Well, that’s quite literally the case these days given the growing number of made-to-order holidays. You can find almost any day of the year, 1500 of them but who’s counting? Meet Marlo Anderson, the man behind the National Day Calendar, the official decider of those often weird days you see people celebrating on Facebook or hear them talking about on morning TV.
A Love of Celebration
Marlo Anderson, of Mandan, North Dakota, was curious one day about the origins of National Popcorn Day (January 19th) and started keeping a blog called the National Day Calendar, which these days has grown into the official decider of National Days. He had always had a love of Celebration and was digging around about where National Popcorn Day came from and couldn’t find any real information.
The National Day Calendar Takes Off
Working from a small building in Mandan, Anderson had been running a video conversion and computer repair business, but then the calendar took off. “The first month there was like a thousand people that came to the website, six months we had a million people in the month come to the website and I’m like this is really interesting”, says Anderson. He decided to go all in on the calendar after all, creating a system whereby people can suggest new national days online.
The Process of Adding National Days
Amy Monette and Doug Philip are part of the team at National Day who vote on what does and doesn’t get a spot on the calendar. A lot of it is food-related; we have a lot of food days- donut day, for example. Are people just looking for an excuse to eat a donut? “I think people are looking for an excuse just to have some fun”, says Amy.
No Governmental Authority
It’s important to note that the National Day Calendar does not have any governmental authority to do this. The government, of course, has the 11 actual national holidays we’re all familiar with. There are also sponsored days in which a company pays money to have a national day declared for its product.
Impact on Businesses
National Days are impactful on businesses as well. Kim Francis, spokesperson for the Checkers and Rallies chain of restaurants, said “In an average year we can sell as up to 135,000 pounds of french fries per restaurant, but National french fry day we absolutely plan weeks in advance to make sure we have plenty of fries to satisfy the demand on National French Fry Day.”
National Days might not be official holidays, but they are fun celebrations that bring people together and create a sense of community. Thanks to Marlo Anderson and his team at the National Day Calendar, we now have a way to keep track of these fun celebrations and make sure we never miss a chance to celebrate something new.