November 29th Square Dance Day

Well dust off your boots and cowboy hats, today is Square Dance Day. Oddly, this dance was begun in England, or Scotland , and brought over to America. We consider it an American Dance but it’s not. Now we did add a “caller” because it was a little complicated to remember all those steps, but even with the caller you’ve got to be a pretty quick study because the calls are so fast once you’ve digested them, the next are already up. So “Dosey Do” and “Swing Your Partner” cause it’s time to get down and boogie!

How to celebrate – Learn how to Square Dance. Become a Square Dance “Caller”. It’s great exercise, get up and dance!

Oct. 27th National Tell A Story Day

Today is National Tell A Story Day In Scotland and the UK. Interestingly, it is exactly 6 months after (Or before) the US day. Anyway, the idea is that you tell, or read, someone a story, and with Halloween coming up why not make it a scary story? Or just after that comes Christmas so it could be a Christmas story. (Or really it could be any kind of story.) So here comes the shameless plug on my short story, “Why the Evergreen’s Stay Green”. It’s on Amazon so if you don’t have a different story you want to tell, buy a copy of my book and enjoy. https://www.amazon.com/Evergreens-Stay-Green-John-Olbert-ebook/dp/B01NCI7RAZ

How to celebrate – Tell someone a story today. Read someone a story today. Buy a copy of “Why the Evergreens Stay Green”.

October 4th National Golf Day

Today we honor the over 4,300 golf pros that are members of the PGA who do all sorts of charitable work throughout the year. It commemorates the first charity even it held in 1952. Many organizations declare this day in June but the original was started in October. Golf is sort of the reverse of Robin Hood, or kind of anyway… it’s where the rich give to the poor of their own accord (No middle man so to speak). Golf is generally a sport for the more wealthy. They do, however, do a lot of good for the community and people in need.

How to celebrate – Become a golf pro. Attend a golf tournament. Start a putt-putt golf for charity tournament.

October 4th National Golf Day

The Scots invented golf but today belongs to the 4,300 members of the PGA. The day has actually been around since 1952 as professional golfers compete for different charities, giving the winnings to those in need. Golf is not exactly a poor man’s game. The clubs, the outfits, the golf carts and, of course, those hours spent in the clubhouse are expensive! 18 holes can take hours to play and, of course, it covers a long distance between the tee and the hole. It’s great exercise, takes a lot of skill and is a great place to work out business deals and make fashion statements.

How to celebrate – Play around of golf. Buy a golf cart so you can look cool. Take the family to a Miniature Golf Course.

April 10th Golfer's Day

Like to play golf? I like the game but am not very good at it. In fact, I think I am one of few who has been asked to leave the green because I took too long to play a hole. (I didn’t realize 100 strokes was over the limit per hole) Anyway, no one sees to know exactly how this holiday came to be but it probably has something to do with the Professional Golf Association (PGA) beginning on April 10th, 1916. That is when the first professional tournament was held and first score card was altered. I hear from friends that live in Scotland, where golf got it’s start, that the original golfer played for nearly 50 years… no one had invented the hole yet.

How to celebrate – Go play a round of golf. Join a golf club. Hang out at a club house and look cool.

April 6th National Tartan Day

Come from a Scottish or Irish background? Well today is the day to show your colors and be proud of it. I am sure there are other countries that wear the tartan too, but Scotland is the best known for it. In fact, today is a celebration of Scotland’s Declaration of Independence being signed. Fact is, the American Declaration was based on the one the Scots declared in 1320. Tartan colors designate the families that created them. Reds, greens, and blues, were all difficult colors to obtain in history, but the Scottish spent time and money getting the colors just right. To wear them is to show pride in your Scottish heritage.

How to celebrate – Research your family’s Tartan. Visit Scotland. When the lockdown is over, plan to attend one of the many parades all over the world to show off Tartan pride.

April 3rd National Tweed Day

It’s nice to have choices. Today we either celebrate tweed, the fabric, originating in Scotland that is popular in the north (Cause it’s just t hot to wear in the south) Or we can celebrate NYC’s famed mobster “Boss Tweed” who was born on April 3rd, 1823. He served as a U.S. House of Representatives and as a NY State Senator as well as serving himself in every corrupt form of government one can imagine! It’s your choice, maybe you can combine them though. Since Tweed lived in a northern climate, maybe he wore tweed! So this could then be Tweed wearing Tweed Day! It makes as much sense as a lot of the days do!?!

How to celebrate – Wear a tweed outfit today. Study “Boss Tweed” and his reign of terror. Visit Scotland!

November 29th Square Dance Day

Is there anything more American than the square dance!?! Well, yes because the square dance actually comes from the Irish, English and Scottish! However, they do not use a caller for those required directions are truly American.

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Allemande, Promenade, Courtesy, Circulate and Do Sa Do (Or Do Si Do) are all popular commands for the square dance. If they do not sound familiar to you, you probably do not square dance.

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You can see the origins in Medieval dance, though their squares were more rectangles. The way royals often showed their royalty by being the only ones who knew the steps to the dance. Since America has no royalty, we use the caller to tell us what to do.

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Generally accompanied by country or folk music with a quick beat, this dance style is both fun and rigorous. It can also be painful for those who do not know the steps. (Toes are likely to be stepped on)

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I wonder if Mr. and Mrs. Claus square dance? Perhaps it could become the traditional Christmas dance! It generally is colorful enough and it is a celebration. An new invention, The Christmas Square Dance!

How to celebrate – Learn how to square dance. Learn how to become a caller. Invent a rock and roll square dance.

October 4th National Golf Day

It seems like you have to be a golfer these days to be president of the United States. It does sort of make you wonder, a grown man (Or Woman) chasing a little white ball around the hills, forests and ponds to make sure it falls into a hole, the one with a flag stuck in it.

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HAWAII VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK, HI – MAY 15: People play golf as an ash plume rises in the distance from the Kilauea volcano on Hawaii’s Big Island on May 15, 2018 in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii. The U.S. Geological Survey said a recent lowering of the lava lake at the volcano’s Halemaumau crater ‘has raised the potential for explosive eruptions’ at the volcano. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)

They brave alligators, snakes, other golfers and even volcanoes just to get in 18 holes. There is something about the game that draws in the rich and powerful, not being among them.. I do not see it. I have been kicked off some of the finest golf course in America, so I should know.

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However, it is a good game to keep healthy, get in a little exercise and talk over matters of state while chasing after that elussive ball. The Scots invented the game, though I am not sure it wasn’t just a way to avoid the English soldiers that came after them.

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Entire communities have sprung up around golf courses, and with good reason (It’s where the rich people go!) But the game also serves that community, often raising funds for those in need while affording those contributors to do something they enjoy. That’s a win-win for everybody!

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Today was created by the PGA in 1952 which held it’s first event at Cog Hill Golf & Counry Club in Lemont, Il. The first event raised some $80,000.00, a lot of money now but even more so in the 1950’s. Golf is a good game, it requires skill and talent to play. Two really good qualities the successful normally pocess.

How to celebrate – Play a round of golf today. Contribute to the PGA. Learn about the game of golf.

April 6th National Tartan Day

It seems like most countries in the world celebrate some sort of contact with the Scottish. America is no different, in fact many of our forefathers came from Scotland in an effort to start a new life away from the royalty of England. Now Scotland declared it independence  from England in 1320.

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Though they have never actually left the United Kingdom they did win a great deal if independence and set the format for the American Declaration of Independence. When we think of Scotland we more than likely think of bagpipes and kilts. Well kilts are made up of wool and patterned with different colors to make up a type of Crest for the family.

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Those colors represent the family instantly identifying the clan. You might think of it as a family uniform. Most colors are bright, though not all, giving a certain flare and pride to those that wear the tartan.

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The Highlands created many characters we all know today, probably the best known is the Highlander. (Well duh!) His character made the kilt (tartan) popular world-wide. Though it never went out of popularity in Scotland.  It still represents the clans of Scotland, but now it also represents pride in Scotland.

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One of the most famed military units in history is the Untied Kingdom’s Black Watch. Most of the unit comes from Scotland and a part of the uniform, even today, is the tartan giving them a clear identity in the field. The world has gained a lot from the Scottish people, inventions, foods and work ethic are only a few of them. But we know the Tartan probably the best of all.

How to celebrate – Check into your Scottish heritage. Find out is you have tartan colors for your family. Visit Scotland.