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Indigenous Peoples' Day

What does Indigenous Peoples' Day celebrate?

Indigenous Peoples' Day honors the Indigenous Peoples of the United States including American Indians, Alaskan Natives, and Native Hawaiians. It celebrates the people, their history, and culture.

When is Indigenous Peoples' Day celebrated?

In the United States it is typically celebrated on the second Monday in October.

Who celebrates this day?

In the United States the level of celebration varies from state to state and community to community. Some states (New Mexico and Maine) have the day as an official holiday and government buildings and schools are closed. Other states celebrate the day, but not as an official holiday.

Other countries including Brazil, Taiwan, and the Philippines celebrate a version of this holiday.

What do people do to celebrate?

There are all sorts of celebrations throughout the United States. Some of these celebrations include concerts (Washington D.C.), art exhibitions (Cincinnati, Ohio), a running event (New Mexico), a bike ride (Phoenix, Arizona), and many parties and gatherings.

People that have the day off from work and/or school often travel over the weekend.

Indigenous Peoples' Day Activities

On Indigenous Peoples' Day you can go here to learn more about Native American history. You can also go to a museum to learn more about the art and culture of Indigenous Peoples. In Washington, D.C. there is the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian that is a great resource and a wonderful museum.

History of Indigenous Peoples' Day

Indigenous Peoples' Day began as a counter-celebration to Columbus Day. Various groups felt that the indigenous peoples who were already in the Americas should be celebrated rather than the European explorer who started the colonization of the land.

The first official celebration of the day was in Berkeley, California in 1992. This year marked the 500th year since Columbus first arrived in the Americas. Rather than celebrate his arrival, Berkeley celebrated the culture and people of the American Indigenous Peoples.

Since 1992, other cities have slowly followed the lead of Berkeley and started celebrating the day. In 2014, several cities adopted the day. Eventually, some states including Maine and New Mexico adopted the day as a holiday. In 2021, President Joe Biden officially recognized the day as a holiday.

Interesting Facts About Indigenous Peoples' Day Indigenous Peoples' Day Dates October Holidays
Yom Kippur
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Columbus Day
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