Christmas is celebrated by millions of people around the world, making December 25th one of the most anticipated days of the year. This beloved holiday comes and goes each year, and in a matter of 24 hours the music, the presents, the ugly sweaters, and the eggnog become unimportant for another whole year. What happens when it's all over? I've compiled a list of historical and cultural events that make December 26th a special day all on its own!
Kwanzaa is an African-rooted holiday beginning on December 26th. African families gather each night of the seven-night celebration for a traditional celebration including a feast, candle lighting, and a discussion of African principles. The holiday was created in 1966 by Dr. Maulana Karenga as a way for African families to explore their heritage.
2.Sales Sales Sales!
Many stores jack up their prices for the holiday season, knowing that consumers will be likely buy their products in spite of the prices if it means making their loved one happy on Christmas Day. Naturally, once the rush to buy gifts is over, many of these items go on sale! If you're brave enough to endure the crowds, this is a great opportunity to score some deals!
In addition to being one of the biggest sale days of the year, December 26th is also one of the biggest return days of the year. People want to quickly get rid of any doubles they received or any things that just weren't the right size or style. Combining this with all of the sales makes this day a nightmare for retail workers and shoppers.
4.The Revolutionary War - Victory at Trenton
Led by General George Washington, the Continental Army defeated Hessian defenders in Trenton, New Jersey on the morning of December 26th, 1776. The Army took advantage of the Hessians' post-Christmas slump, surrounding Trenton and capturing many of the enemy troops. This victory was a turning point in the Revolutionary War, raising the morale of those at war as well as those on the home front.
5.The Flamingo Hotel is opened in Las Vegas
On December 26th, 1946, notorious mobster Bugsy Siegel held the grand opening of The Pink Flamingo Hotel and Casino, a place on the Sunset Strip that he named after his girlfriend. Due to inclement weather and an inability to keep patrons, the grand opening failed and the hotel was closed after only two weeks.
6.The Loss of Two Presidents
Two United States Presidents passed away on December 26th - Harry S. Truman in 1972 and Gerald Ford in 2006. Truman, taking over after the death of Franklin D. Roosevelt, saw the United States through the Korean War and the conclusion of World War II (including the bombing of Japan). Ford was sworn in as president after the resignation of Richard Nixon. He also lived longer than any other U.S. president in history, making it to 93 years old.
December 26th is known as Boxing Day in many countries (the United States not being one of them). It is described as "a national Bank Holiday, a day to spend with family and friends and to eat up all the leftovers of Christmas Day." The day extends the Christmas holiday, giving workers another (sometimes paid) day off in the holiday season.
8. Horse Racing
The King George VI Chase horse race is held on Boxing Day each year in England.
Hopefully this list helps you get over your post-Christmas sadness!