March 21st Mermaid Day

March 21st Mermaid Day

One of the most beloved creatures of the sea is the mermaid. Originally sailors thought that manatees were mermaids. Ah, I think they needed glasses, but beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Today we celebrate mermaid day by having parades and parties featuring our favorite sea creature. The most recognized parade is on Coney Island where every mermaid known to man will be represented. I’ll bet the event makes a real splash with all who attend.

How to celebrate – Dress up like a mermaid. Go to Florida and see manatees up close. Visit Coney Island and take part in the big event.

June 18th National Go Fishing Day

What a wonderful way to get out and enjoy nature, get a little sunshine and have fun all at the same time! Go fishing! It’s another of those unofficial/ official holidays that doesn’t really matter if you celebrate or not. And why wait for just today!?! Really it’s okay to go fishing anytime! of course now that we are in summer it’s a little more fun than winter but there is always ice fishing! The key to the entire day of fishing is… don’t catch any fish! Then you’d have to gut them, skin them and fillet them even before eating them. The easiest way to accomplish this is, don’t put any bait on your hook! You can get all that fun stuff without any of the work to go along with it! You can still enjoy the sun, nature and your favorite eatery when the sun has set.

How to celebrate – Go fishing. Start your own fishing pond in your backyard. Rent a boat and go out on a lake or the ocean.

February 16th World Whale Day

World Whale Day – February 16th

People use to think we would have whales forever, they are now learning we aren’t. In the past, hunting whales was their biggest threat as no other sea creature could even challenge them. Today, it’s the loss of natural habitat and pollution that is killing them off. World Whale Day started in 1980 in Maui, Hawaii and has become a ongoing affair.

How to celebrate – Go whale sighting if you get the chance. Learn what you can do to hello make the whales habitat safer. Visit Hawaii.

August 7th National Lighthouse Day

Here in the United States the U.S. Congress took over the operations of all lighthouses on August 7th, 1789. Once operated by the Federal Government the lighthouses became standardized here in America and were literally lifesavers for those at sea. they normally mark where the ocean meets the land, or lake if that is the case, and mark tremulous areas that Captains of ships need to watch out for.

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Originally these lighthouses had to manned since the signal sent out was either a torch or lantern that had to be lit and watched over all night long. Many lighthouses had living quarters in the actual tower while others had houses connected to them where the lighthouse keeper could live.

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During the day light hours the lighthouse was useful as a beacon for navigation, at night they were a necessity for  mariners. As the years past and electricity replaced the torch or lantern, the lighthouse keeper became scarce since they were no longer required to light them, or watch them for fires.

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So today the lighthouse has become more of a museum to the past when they were required. With the invention of radar and GPS, most are not even lit anymore. They serve as wonder platforms for observation of the area, most having beautiful views of the surrounding area.

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How to celebrate – Visit a local lighthouse today. Stand in the middle of a very dark area and see if you can tell where the water and land meet.  Start your own miniature lighthouse collection.

August 4th U.S. Coast Guard Day

It is often the forgotten branch of the defense of our country but over the years it has been the single branch of the service solely devoted to the defense of the United States. Created by the U.S. Congress on August 4th, 1790 it was first known as the Revenue Cutter Service, it’s primary duty to ensure all good brought into the country were both legal and subject to tariffs and taxes.

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Originally formed under the guidance of, yes, Alexander Hamilton, (I’m not sure if it’s in the musical “Hamilton” or not but it should be) and evolved from tax and tariff duty to include search and rescue, along with defense. Even though outside of it’s role it did serve sort of as an offensive group during World War 2 as many of the landing craft used to invade our enemies were piloted by Coast Guard trained helmsmen.

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They became the police, and fire rescue of the coastal waterways, rivers and lakes of America. The Revenue Cutter Service was changed to the U.S. Coast Guard in 1915 and today are a vital part of Homeland Security. But most of us know them best for the search and rescue of those in need in the water. They have saved untold thousands of people that would have perished otherwise.

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Like most of the services, they have their own academy where students are educated in various different majors but include service to the Coast Guard. There are many, many unsung heroes that have given their all to help others and keep our country safe. Their motto, “Semper Paratus” meaning “Always Ready”.

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We owe a lot to our men and women of the Coast Guard. They are the most forgotten of all our military services mainly because instead of causing death and destruction, they save and build.

How to celebrate – Read about the history of the Coast Guard. Thank any you see who serve in the Coast guard for their service.  Go see “Hamilton” and see if the Coast Guard is mentioned in the show.

June 24th National Swim A Lap Day

I think this is one of the best sports ever created! Swimming! And perfect for summer! I mean, what other sport can you do during the summer and not sweat! And swimming laps, not just getting in the pool and splashing around, is some of the best excercise you can get!

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If you don’t have your own pool there are many public pools that you can go to. Even the ocean or lakes are available. (Though swimming laps might be a challenge if you use the ocean) In fact the public ones probably actually allow you to swim laps where home pools are designed more for just having fun and hanging out.

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And a lot of people look really, really cool in their swim suits… of course many more, like me, don’t look so good but at least you are covered up by the water! You exercise your heart, lungs, legs, arms, stomach, toes and even your brain (Keeping you from running into the sides of the pool).

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There are even dogs that love to swim laps! Naturally they don’t know they are swimming laps and some laps turn in to circles but it’s even good exercise for them! (My dog loves to walk in the rain, but sadly won’t swim with me.)

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It’s fun, it’s cool and it’s great exercise… what more do you want!?! Jump in! But make sure the water is deep enough that you won’t bottom out.

How to celebrate – Go for a swim today. Gradually develop swimming more laps and great distances. Remember not to eat while swimming… your food will get all soggy.

August 7th National Lighthouse Day

August 7th National Lighthouse Day

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Over the years, it’s hard to imagine how many lives these beacons of light have saved. Built to warn of dangerous coast lines, hazardous shoals, and designate safe entry points to harbors, these lighthouses guide ships, and now planes, to safety.

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The first known lighthouse in America was in St. Augustine, built in 1586. The United States formed the US Bureau of Lighthouses in 1789, eventually giving over control to the Coast Guard.

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How to celebrate – Visit a lighthouse near you, Most lighthouses had caretakers that kept the light lit, study the history of those heroes of the seas. Build your own mini-lighthouse in your yard.