In North America, Father’s Day is celebrated annually on the third Sunday of June. In other countries, such as in Latin America and in Europe, fathers are honored on St. Joseph’s Day, a traditional Catholic holiday that falls on March 19. This year, Father’s Day falls on June 21.
The idea of Father’s Day was initiated by a woman named Sonora Smart Dodd from Spokane, Washington, who wanted to establish a day like Mother’s Day for male parents. As one of six children raised by a widower, she wanted to honor her father. She successfully canvassed her idea at local churches, the YMCA, shopkeepers and government officials, and the first Father’s Day in the United States was celebrated in Washington state on June 19, 1910. By 1916, President Wilson honored the day by using telegraph signals to unfurl a flag in Spokane when he pressed a button in Washington, D.C. Then President Coolidge urged all state governments to observe Father’s Day in 1924.1
During the 1920s and 1930s, a movement rose to combine Mother’s Day and Father’s Day into “Parents’ Day.” Activists assembled on Mother’s Day every year in New York City’s Central Park to rally in favor of Parents’ Day. This push failed when the Great Depression happened. Struggling retailers and advertisers wanted two separate days to promote sales of gift items. Father’s Day was marketed as a “second Christmas for men.”2 By World War II, a different group of activists successfully argued that celebrating Father’s Day was a way to honor American troops and support the war effort; however, it wasn’t until 1972 when President Nixon signed a proclamation that Father’s Day became a federal holiday!
Depending on where you and the fathers in your lives are during these unusual times, you may celebrate differently this year. Whether you are sending love via Zoom or FaceTime, by phone or a traditional card, together in spirit or lucky enough to be physically on site, always honor your dad! The older they get, the more it counts.
This Father’s Day, remind Dad to take care of himself with a daily walk or exercise of some kind, eating healthy and practicing Active Wellness. As mentioned last week, men are 80% less likely to monitor their health through a healthcare source. If you’re able, take your father for a checkup, a walk in the park, or fix him a delicious smoothie with Kenzen Vital Balance®! Father’s Day is not just about giving ties and other gifts. What you give dad in terms of time spent with him is perhaps the most valuable gift of all.
From each of us at Nikken, have a Safe and Happy Father’s Day!