Holidays in the United States of America

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languages department







REPORTin the United States of America


Performed byAlexander









Kyiv- 2011



1.Introduction (Only names)

2.New Years Day

.Martin Luther Kings Day

.Presidents Day

.Thanksgiving Day


.St.Valentines Day

.April Fools Day





1.Only names


People in every culture celebrate holidays. Although the word "holiday" literally means "holy day," most American holidays are not religious, but commemorative in nature and origin. Because the nation is blessed with rich ethnic heritage it is possible to trace some of the American holidays to diverse cultural sources and traditions, but all holidays have taken on a distinctively American flavour. In the United States, the word "holiday" is synonymous with "celebration".the strict sense, there are no federal (national) holidays in the United States. Each of the 50 states has jurisdiction over its holidays. In practice, however, most states observe the federal ("legal or public ") holidays, even though the President and Congress can legally designate holidays only for federal government employees.The followingholidays per year are proclaimed by the federal government.


New Year's DayJanuary, 1Martin Luther King Daythird Monday in JanuaryPresidents' Daythird Monday in FebruaryMemorial Daylast Monday in MayIndependence DayJuly, 4Labour Dayfirst Monday in SeptemberColumbus Daysecond Monday in OctoberVeterans' DayNovember, 11Thanksgiving Dayfourth Thursday in NovemberChristmas DayDecember, 25

In 1971, the dates of many federal holidays were officially moved to the nearest Monday by then-President Richard Nixon. There are four holidays which are not necessarily celebrated on Mondays: Thanksgiving Day, New Year's Day, Independence Day and Christmas Day. When New Year's Day, Independence Day, or Christmas Day falls on a Sunday, the next day is also a holiday. When one of these holidays falls on a Saturday, the previous day is also a holiday. Federal government offices, including the post office, are always closed on all federal holidays. Schools and businesses close on major holidays like Independence Day and Christmas Day but may not always be closed, for example, on Presidents' Day or Veterans' Day.

Critics of the proliferation of holidays point an accusing finger at greeting card manufacturers and other entrepreneurs. The critics say that "Holiday X" is simply promoted to get people to buy their wares. "Secretary's Day", or "Grandparents Day" might fall into this category. , no effort has been made to be comprehensive in treating all holidays that Americans would possibly celebrate. Only "major" holidays, recognized if not celebrated by Americans in general, have been included here. Each unit is introduced by a reading the passage about the background of the American holiday or celebration. When relevant, a speech, song, or poem pertaining to the holiday follows. There might be a special feature about the holiday, such as regional or religious factors which make the celebration different.


Other Widely Celebrated Observances, that usually don't affect work schedules

GroundhogDayFebruary, 2Lincoln'sBirthdayFebruary, 12Valentine'sDayFebruary,14Washington'sBirthdayFebruary,22St. Patrick'sDayMarch,17AprilFools'sDayApril, 1Earth DayApril, 22 (since 1970)Administrative Assistants' DayWednesday of the last full week of April (that is, the Wednesday before the last Saturday in April) since 1955Arbour Daythe last Friday in April (since 1872)Mothers' Daysecond Sunday in MayFathers' Daythird Sunday in JuneParents' Dayfourth Sunday in JulyGrandparents' DaySunday after Labor DayUnitedNationsDayOctober, 24HalloweenOctober, 31

2.New Years Day


The beginning of the New Year has been welcomed on different dates throughout history. Great Britain and its colonies in America adopted the Gregorian calendar in 1752, in which January 1st was restored as New Year's Day. Ways of celebrating differ as well, according to customs and religions of the world. People in Moslem societies, for example, celebrate the New Year by wearing new clothes. Southeast Asians release birds and turtles to assure themselves good luck in the twelve months ahead. Jewish people consider the day holy, and hold a religious ceremony at a meal with special foods. Hindus of India leave shrines next to their beds, so they can see beautiful objects at the start of the New Year. Japanese prepare rice cakes at a social event the week before the New Year. the custom, most of people feel the same sentiment. With a new year, we can expect a new life. We wish each other good luck and promise ourselves to do better in the following year. the United States, the federal holiday is January first, but Americans begin celebrating on December 31. Sometimes people have masquerade balls, where guests dress up in costumes and cover their faces with masks. According to an old tradition, guests unmask at midnight. the warmer regions all around the country there are other games whose names are characteristic of the state. People watch the Orange Bowl game in Florida, the Cotton Bowl in Texas, and the Sugar Bowl in Louisiana. In most cultures, people promise to better themselves in the following year. Americans have inherited the tradition and even write down their New Year's resolutions. Whatever the resolution, most of them are broken or forgotten by February!

3.Martin Luther Kings day


"We will not resort to violence. We will not degrade ourselves with hatred. Love will not be returned with hate."

It was December, 1955, and Martin Luther King, Jr. had just received his doctorate degree in theology. He had moved to Montgomery, Alabama to preaсh (проповедовать) at a Baptist church. He saw there, as in many other southern states that African-Americans had to ride in the back of public buses. Dr. King knew that this law violated (нарушал) the rights of every African-American. He organized and led a boycott of the public buses in the city of Montgomery. Any person, black or white, who was against segregation (изоляции) refused to use public transportation. Those people who boycotted were threatened (угрожали) or attacked by other people, or even arrested or jailed (Заключенывтюрьму) by the police. After 382 Days of boycotting the bus system, the Supreme Court declared that the Alabama state segregation law was unconstitutional. 1968, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated (убит) while he was leading a workers' strike in Memphis, Tennessee. White people and black people who had worked so hard for peace and civil rights were shocked and angry. The world grieved (горевал) the loss (потери) of this man of peace.following is an excerpt from the speech entitled "I Have a Dream," delivered by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial on August 28, 1963.


"I Have A Dream"say to you today, my friends, that in spite of the difficulties and frustrations of the moment I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave-owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a desert state sweltering with the heat of injustice and oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the colour of their skin but by the content of their character...have a dream that one day the state of Alabama ... will be transformed into a situation where little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls and walk together as sisters and brothers.if America is to be a great nation this must become true. So let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire.freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York. freedom ring from the snow-capped Rockies of Colorado!freedom ring from the curvaceous peaks of California!not only that; let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia!freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee!we let freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of Gods children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of that old Negro spiritual, Free at last! Free at last! Thank God almighty, we are free at last!

. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s death did not slow the Civil Rights Movement. Black and white people continued to fight for freedom and equality. Coretta Scott King is the widow (вдова) of the civil rights leader. In 1970, she established the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Centre in Atlanta, Georgia. This "living memorial" consists of his boyhood home and the Ebenezer Baptist Church, where King is buried.15 had been observed as a public holiday for many years in 27 states and Washington,