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MEMORIAL DAY – Last Monday in May


Each year in the United States, Americans observe the Federal holiday, Memorial Day, the last Monday in May. It honors and remembers all men and women who have died while serving in the United States Armed Forces. Memorial Day is also a day to remember all loved ones who have passed away.

Traditionally on Memorial Day, the flag of the United States of America is raised briskly to the top of the staff then solemnly lowered to the half-staff position where it remains until noon. At noon, it is then raised to full-staff for the remainder of the day.

When the flag is at half-staff, the position is in remembrance of the more than one million men and women who gave their lives for their country. Raising the flag at noon signifies the nation lives, that the country is resolved not to let their sacrifice be in vain but to rise up in their honor and continue to fight for liberty and justice for all.

In the United States, Memorial Day also traditionally marks the beginning of summer.


Attend Memorial Day services in your community. In your own way, pay tribute in remembrance of service members who have died while serving. Visit a veterans’ cemetery to honor those who’ve impacted your life. Use #MemorialDay to post on social media.


Honoring the men and women who have died while serving in the military, communities, individuals, and organizations have kept Memorial Day in various forms in the United States since the end of the Civil War. General John Logan first called for a nationwide day of remembrance on May 5, 1868. The observance was called Decoration Day, and it was observed on May 30th, 1868.

Decoration Day

General James Garfield spoke at Arlington National Cemetery with Generals Grant, Howard, Logan, Pane, Wool, and Hancock in attendance. Volunteers also decorated the graves of 20,000 Union and Confederate soldiers.

Across the country, humble tributes occurred on that first Decoration Day. Just outside Fort Stevens near Washington, D.C., there was a small cemetery where 40 soldiers were buried, one of whom belonged to a widow from Northern Vermont. He was one of three sons she lost to the war. On Decoration Day, she went to the cemetery carrying 40 wreaths for 40 graves.

Someone placed a laurel wreath upon the head of a Lincoln statue at City Hall, Washington, D.C.

In Cincinnati, Hamilton and Dayton Railroads transported passengers to the Spring Grove Cemetery.  As a tribute, communities displayed flags at half-mast along the routes. More volunteers placed floral wreaths on the soldiers’ graves, and speeches were made. Many of the first Decoration Days recognized only the Union soldiers. However, other events included the Confederate soldiers as well. Over time, the day grew to include all those soldiers lost during the conflict.

Decoration Day gradually became known as Memorial Day and now honors all U.S. service members who have died during a military conflict. Memorial Day continued to be observed on May 30th for many years. Then, in 1968, Congress passed the Uniform Monday Holiday Act of 1968. Since 1971, Memorial Day has been observed the last Monday of May.



On May 31st, National Smile Day encourages everyone to wear their best smile!

The first recorded smile on record took place on 126 B.C. Okay, we made that up. But did you smile? Joking aside, we generate a smile when funny things happen or find pleasure in the things we do. Someone we love or enjoy spending time with may be the cause of a grin or beaming look of joy.

Smiles are powerful! They not only create engagement between two people but the more a person smiles, the healthier their brain can be. Smiling has a direct link to our brain and can help to reduce stress.

There is so much a smile can do. Just one smile can brighten someone’s day. It can also improve your day. Smiles are infectious. A healthy smile can develop confidence and generate a new outlook on the world.

HOW TO OBSERVE #NationalSmileDay

Share your smile and how a smile improves your day.  Use #NationalSmileDay to share on social media.


Dr. Tim Stirneman and Jim Wojdyla from Compassionate Dentalcare founded National Smile Day share with the world what the power of a healthy smile can do.  Confidence, health, and quality of life are just for the person smiling.

National Autonomous Vehicle Day - May 31


Observe the future on May 31st with National Autonomous Vehicle Day and experience the realization of science and technology merging like never before.

An autonomous vehicle, including self-driving cars (both manned and unmanned) and unmanned aerial vehicles, may seem like something out of a science fiction movie. Still, these cutting-edge technologies have placed a variety of industries at a precipice of change. Cars that take us from point A to point B without having to touch the wheel are already a reality in some states. Autonomous Friendly Corridors, like one proposed in North Dakota, could boost commerce and become centers of more innovation. Pilot programs around the country test a variety of formats.

The year 2017 proved to be a big year for the Autonomous Vehicle. The first ten testing sites dedicated to developing autonomous vehicles were announced by the US Department of Transportation. While some states grapple with how this new technology affects current laws and what changes may need to be made, others addressed those questions paving the way (or the skies) for autonomous vehicles to make their debut in their own states.

Driverless cars in test areas continue to expand. Not only do these small samplings provide an opportunity for communities to see and how they perform, but they also give the industry a chance to show how their safety technology works, one community at a time.

Additionally, advancements in technology are propelling industry and infrastructure to keep pace. Proposals range far and wide, influencing agriculture, commerce, medicine, and transportation.

According to the Brookings Institution, one-quarter of all cars will be autonomous by 2040. National Autonomous Vehicle Day recognizes that the future is here. And that future is in the form of a self-driving car that gets us safely from here to there.

HOW TO OBSERVE #AutonomousVehicleDay

It’s not just a question of how will we travel. But it is how will the autonomous vehicles change the world? Find out more about the changing world of autonomous transportation and vehicles. If you’ve ridden in an autonomous vehicle, share your experience. What are your thoughts on autonomous vehicles? Let us know using #AutonomousVehicleDay on social media.

Are you curious about this emerging industry? Read 7 Things About Autonomous Vehicles You Might Not Know.


Emerging Prairie and Marlo Anderson founded National Autonomous Vehicle Day to celebrate the advances in the Autonomous Vehicle industry and the potential opportunities for business and technology growth related to this phenomenal concept. The Registrar at National Day Calendar proclaimed the day in 2017 to be observed annually.



National Speak in Complete Sentences Day is observed annually on May 31st.  This day is dedicated to using proper sentence structure while speaking.

It’s entirely possible to celebrate the day while texting as well. So no LOL or ASAP on May 31st. So if you must Laugh Out Loud As Soon As Possible, you will need to say or type it completely and be sure to include a subject and verb that agree. Oh, and you will also want to be sure to punctuate those sentences correctly. At the very minimum, your sentence will need a tiny little period at the end. Though, do you think it will require any other kind of punctuation? It just might!

HOW TO OBSERVE #SpeakInCompleteSentencesDay

National Speak in Complete Sentences Day encourages us to complete our thoughts with a subject and a verb. If the idea confuses you, we offer these suggestions to take part in the day successfully:

  • You can visit your English teacher from high school. Maybe the teacher will remember which parts of the class you slept through.
  • Grammar blogs and videos offer short tutorials. Reading or viewing one will help clear up any questions you might have.
  • Some schools offer refresher courses. Consider taking one to improve your grammar and understanding of language.
  • If English is your second language, congratulate yourself on this accomplishment. Mastering one language can be complex but communicating in two languages is a beautiful thing!

How will you celebrate? Use #SpeakInCompleteSentencesDay to post on social media.


National Day Calendar continues researching the origins of this grammar-focused holiday. While we do, check out these other grammar and reading days:



On May 31st, Necrotizing Fasciitis Awareness Day shines a light on this rare disease, which affects the soft tissues of the skin, and if not appropriately treated, can spread quickly.

The observance offers more than information to help prevent the infection. It encourages support and provides resources to those who have been affected by the disease.

It’s important to note that necrotizing fasciitis is rare and rare still in healthy people. However, even a small cut can become infected with this bacteria. It is most commonly believed to be caused by group A Streptococcus, and recognizing the symptoms and quickly getting treatment can mean the difference between life and death.

The bacteria can enter the body through other wounds, too. Burns, bites, punctures, and even surgical incisions may be areas of entry for the bacteria.

Like many skin infections, necrotizing fasciitis may start off seeming minor. The skin might be warm to the touch near the injury. It might even be tender. The rest of your body may ache with symptoms similar to the flu, including a fever.

However, minor symptoms can develop and change quickly. Fatigue, changes in the color of your skin, dizziness, and oozing from the infected area are just a few of the symptoms to watch for.

It’s important to contact your physician any time you have a concerning injury. Follow your doctor’s instructions after surgery, too. They provide contact information for follow up care, including any risk of infection.

HOW TO OBSERVE #NecrotizingFasciitisAwarenessDay

Visit for valuable information, donate and help save lives from this devastating condition. Use #NecrotizingFasciitisAwarenessDay to share on social media.


Necrotizing Fasciitis Awareness Day has been observed on May 31st since 2017.



Each year on May 31st, National Macaroon Day celebrates the small coconut cookie that is full of flavor and variety, too. Do not mistake these with the delicate sandwich cookies called macarons. No, these small, but substantial cookies hold their own despite the sometimes mistaken identity. For coconut lovers, this day summons up a little bit of bliss.

The Italians receive credit for creating these sweet morsels sometime around the 8th or 9th century. The recipes later traveled to France. However, in other parts of the world, the once flourless cookie served its purpose during religious observances.

Coconut is one of those love-hate ingredients. ~Chef Marcus Samuelsson

Eventually, the cookie made its way to the United States, where the coconut macaroon takes only a few ingredients to make. Shredded coconut serves as the main ingredient. Usually sweetened, the coconut may also be toasted. Other ingredients include flour, sugar or sweetened condensed milk, and egg whites and flavoring. Once the ingredients are combined, the mixture is dropped by spoonfuls onto baking sheets and baked. Most varieties of coconut macaroons are dipped in milk chocolate, dark chocolate or white chocolate. Almonds, pecans, cashews, or other nuts are sometimes added to the cookie.

This cookie is easy to make, even a beginner can succeed with the simple recipe.

HOW TO OBSERVE #NationalMacaroonDay

While you celebrate the day, jump into baking with a macaroon recipe! Make a variety, too. Add nuts or chocolate or both. You can also visit your favorite bakery and pick up a dozen to share. Give them a shout-out, too! The following are two macaroon recipes for you to try and enjoy!

Coconut Macaroons
Chocolate Dipped Macaroons

Use #NationalMacaroonDay to post on social media.


National Day Calendar continues researching the origins of this cookie holiday. As we do, take some time to explore these other cookie celebrations:

  • Sugar Cookie Day
  • Peanut Butter Cookie Day
  • Pecan Sandies Day
  • Ginger Snaps Day
  • Homemade Cookies Day
  • Pecan Cookies DayNATIONAL SAVE YOUR HEARING DAY – May 31


    Each May 31st, National Save Your Hearing Day recognizes the importance of preserving our hearing. It is important to take some time to learn ways to protect your hearing and that of your family. Our hearing is vital, and there are ways that hearing loss can be avoidable.

    There are various reasons from which hearing loss can be the result, some of which include:

    • Age
    • Noise
    • Genetic
    • Illness
    • Neurological Disorders
    • Medications
    • Chemicals
    • Physical Trauma
    • Neurobiological Factors

    It is estimated half of the cases of hearing impairment and deafness are preventable.  There are many effective, preventative strategies including immunization against rubella to reduce congenital infections, immunization against H. influenza and S. pneumonia to reduce cases of middle ear infections, and avoiding or protecting against excessive noise exposure.

    For more information, visit

    Always be alert to hazardous noise and wear proper hearing protection when needed!

    HOW TO OBSERVE #SaveYourHearingDay

    Learn more about how to protect your hearing. If you think your hearing has declined, schedule a hearing screening with your primary care physician. From there your physician can refer you to an audiologist if more testing is required. Your primary care physician can also guide you through proper cleaning and care of your ears and the type of protection you should be using.

    Some hearing and audiology locations may offer free screenings on May 31st. Check locally for opportunities near you.

    Use #SaveYourHearingDay to post on social media.


    National Day Calendar continues researching the origins of this health holiday.

    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. Many states have their own state celebrations, and National Day Calendar’s observances in no way replace them. There’s so much more to explore, we can’t help but celebrate our beautiful country even more!

    National Utah Day


    On May 31st, we celebrate The Beehive State on National Utah Day!

    Utah became the 45th state on January 4, 1896, and is home to The Great Salt Lake, a deeply rooted Native American heritage, and a far-reaching desert history.

    Travel in the footsteps of Utah’s namesake, the Utes, or the Shoshone, Navajo or Goshute. Follow the trails of early explorers or Mormon settlers. They all lived among the natural arches and bridges formed long ago. These architectural wonders of nature are a cornerstone of Utah.

    Find treasure everywhere you look. From the sunrise to the spiraling cliffs and the bejeweled night sky. Catch an unobstructed view of the Milky Way for miles or schedule a trip just in time for a meteor shower. Since Utah has significantly less light pollution, night star viewing is spectacular!

    Discover why some still believe the world flat by visiting Bonneville Salt Flats. Home of land speed records and a barren environment, the salt flats were once part of a much larger lake. The Great Salt Lake is one of its remnants.

    HOW TO OBSERVE #NationalUtahDay

    Join National Day Calendar as we celebrate the 45th state to join the union. Explore the history and people of Utah. Follow the trails of the pioneers and discover a wealth of heritage in one place. Use #NationalUtahDay to share on social media.

On Deck for June 1, 2021

National Days

International Days

May 31st Celebrated (and Not So Celebrated) History

The first New York Taxicab Company cabs arrive in New York City. Owner Harry N. Allen imported 65 of the red and green cars from France. However, they weren’t the first taxicabs to operate in the United States. In 1897, Samuel’s Electric Carriage and Wagon Company launched in New York City. The company’s electric vehicles grew to 100 by 1889 with a new name – Electric Vehicle Company. By the turn of the century, they operated 1,000 cabs. After fire destroyed almost a third of its cabs and financial crisis struck the country in 1907, Electric Vehicle Company shuttered its doors.


The Titanic launches from Belfast, Northern Ireland.


The State of Israel hangs World War II official Adolf Eichmann for his role in the Holocaust.


Memorial Day is celebrated on the last Monday in May for the first time. In 1968, Congress passed the Uniform Monday Holiday Act giving the country five federal three-day weekends a year. The other four holidays include Washington’s Birthday (Presidents’ Day), Labor Day, Columbus Day and Veterans Day.


In a Vanity Fair article, John D. O’Connor reveals the name of Deep Throat. FBI official Mark Felt confided in O’Connor, family friend and attorney, in 2002.

Recipe of the Day

Strawberry Shortcake
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 25 minutes
Total Prep: 40 minutes
Serves 8-9


6 cups fresh strawberries, sliced
1/2 cup sugar + 3 tablespoons
3 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tablespoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, cubed
1 cup milk
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
16 ounces whipped cream


Placed sliced strawberries in a bowl with 1/2 cup of sugar.

In a large bowl, mix flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Cut in the butter until dough forms small pea-sized pieces. Add milk, cream, and vanilla. Stir until just blended.

Heat oven to 425°F. Drop large spoonfuls of dough onto a baking sheet about 2 inches apart. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes until the shortcakes are golden brown.

Let cool slightly. Place each shortcake onto a serving plate. Slice the top off of each shortcake, dividing the cake in half. Place spoonfuls of strawberries on the bottom layer and top with whipped cream. Add the second layer of shortcake and top with remaining strawberries. Add a final dollop of whipped cream and serve.

May 31st Celebrated (and Not So Celebrated) Birthdays
Walt Whitman – 1819

The transcendentalist and prolific poet, Walt Whitman began his career as a printer and journalist. Author of Leaves of Grass, he published the volume of poems himself.

Chien-Shiung Wu – 1912

In 1936, the Chinese physicist emigrated to the United States. She would become instrumental to the Manhattan Project through her pioneering contributions to particle physics.

Clint Eastwood – 1930

“Go ahead, make my day.” Harry Callahan (AKA Dirty Harry) in Sudden Impact

Clint Eastwood is equally recognized for his acting, directing, and producing abilities. His credits include a long list of award nominations and wins, including Unforgiven, Million Dollar Baby, and American Sniper.

Joe Namath – 1943

The American quarterback played professional football for 13 seasons. In 1969, Namath helped secure a Super Bowl win for the New York Jets.

About National Day Calendar

National Day Calendar® is the authoritative source for fun, unusual and unique National Days! Since our humble beginnings on National Popcorn Day in 2013, we now track nearly 1,500 National Days, National Weeks and National Months. In addition, our research team continues to uncover the origins of existing National Days as well as discover new, exciting days for everyone to celebrate.

There’s a celebration for everyone. While National Road Trip Day satisfies the itch to wander, many pet days let us share our love of animals. National 3-D Day and National Astronaut Day honor the advancement of technology, too. Every food day you can imagine (National Avocado Day, for example), will keep you celebrating, also!

Be sure to stay in the know by signing up for our e-mail updates. Also, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

Our Ambassador Program is another way #CelebrateEveryDay®! Whether you become an ambassador or follow one of the savvy ambassadors, their fun videos and posts will keep you prepared for every holiday.

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