President’s Day 2022: What is President’s Day?

by | Feb 21, 2022 | Blog | 0 comments

What is President’s Day? There’s nothing like celebrating an entire day and not knowing why you’re celebrating it! 

If you’re like many Americans, what comes to mind when you think of President’s Day is associated with the big one-day sales that are endlessly advertised around the holiday. “One day only at the Bon Marche…” is a tune that is forever connected to President’s Day for me! That may have dated me, but oh well!

Is President’s Day a Federal Holiday?

President’s Day is a federal holiday so places like banks, schools, the post office, and other non-essential governments agencies are closed. Most school districts’ mid-winter break happens to fall during the week of President’s Day. Because of this, the holiday often gets forgotten in the mix of the excitement of a school break.

What is President’s Day about?

Isn’t it weird that you can go through childhood and even into adulthood and not know why we are celebrating a national holiday? Don’t worry, if you don’t know what the day is about, many people don’t either. 

The holiday came from the celebration of George Washington’s birthday on February 22, 1732. The celebration of his birthday became an official holiday in 1879 and was celebrated yearly on his birthday. It was the first federal holiday that celebrated an individual American. 

It wasn’t until the 1960s that people began to refer to it as President’s Day and Lincoln’s birthday was lumped together as also falls in February. Despite this, the day is still legally called George Washington’s birthday. President’s Day was moved to the third Monday of the month of February to create a long weekend for the nation’s workers. This move also encouraged the push for retail sales surrounding the holiday.

Over time, some states have moved to celebrate Washington, Jefferson, and Lincoln together on President’s Day,  Most people would agree that President’s Day is the celebration of Washington and Lincoln’s birthdays. With that said, some people choose to celebrate all presidents on President’s Day.

How Do People Celebrate President’s Day?

Most people will enjoy the day off of work and school, catch a few sales, and relax. For kids, because President’s Day is part of the Mid-Winter Break holiday, many families take time to get away or enjoy downtime.


President’s Day is a big sale day in the retail world. While big department stores are notorious for their President’s Day sales, I’ve scoped out some great sales on Amazon as well. Sales on linens and towels, mattresses, and clothing have long been associated with President’s Day and these are a few that I’m eyeing this President’s Day.

Bamboo Sheets – I recently ordered these for one of our smaller beds to test it out before ordering a set for our King size bed. I’m a huge fan of bamboo sheets and I love these. They are super soft and durable. They are 40% off any size when you click on the coupon.

Burt Bees Baby PJs – We got all our kids Burt Bees PJs this year for Christmas and they are their favorite. They aren’t too heavy but are warm and super soft. They are made out of organic cotton have simple designs with soft tones. These are specifically baby sizes so if you have a baby or need a gift for someone, this is a good time to buy.

100% Organic Cotton Turkish Towels – Towels are one of those things that are worth investing in. You use them daily, and a good one can last years. There’s nothing better than a luxurious, soft, and absorbent towel,  and these towels exceed the mark. They are currently 30% off with the coupon. 


There are the people who love to shop on President’s Day and then there are people who love to celebrate the holiday through learning. Many people each year use the holiday to travel to national monuments and historical sites. Here are a few of the most popular.

  1. Washington D.C. – You can visit the White House for a study on where our presidents live while in office. While in D.C. there’s also the Lincoln and Jefferson memorial as well as the George Washington monument that you can tour. 
  2. Mount Vernon – Located in Fairfax County, Virginia, it was the home and plantation of George & Martha Washington.
  3. Mount Rushmore – In the Black Hills of South Dakota, the carvings are in honor of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln. 


How Do We Celebrate President’s Day?

Of course, as you can tell above, I like to take advantage of sales. While I love a good sale, more importantly, is what we teach about President’s Day. One of my favorite things about homeschooling is having the freedom to teach from different angles–from voices and perspectives often forgotten or silenced. For President’s Day, we haven’t traveled to do sightseeing of related places, but hope to one day. For now, we talk about these places and the significance of our presidents. 

While we talk about the purpose and significance of the White House in relation to our Presidents, we also talk about how slaves built, worked, and lived in the White House. These accounts are often forgotten in the telling of the history of the White House. To read more, head to the White House Historical Association.

Mount Vernon, while rich in history has a large part of its history rooted in slavery. Teaching the role that slavery played in the life in Mount Vernon is essential. Mount Vernon does acknowledge the role slavery played in day-to-day life at Mount Vernon. Their online resources as well as The Slave Memorial at Mount Vernon and other exhibits speak to the life of enslaved people who lived at Mount Vernon.  If we were to visit Mount Vernon in person one day, we would love to also visit the Richmond National Slavery Museum which is still being constructed in Richmond, Virginia. It is a museum being built on the remains found in the early 2000s of a slave auction complex, which included the jail of Lumpkins (a notoriously cruel slave owner) slaves, also known as the “Devil’s half acre.” This museum is dedicated to unearthing the truth and legacy of enslavement in America.

Mount Rushmore has always been on our bucket list. We’ve never been to South Dakota and but the landscape is supposed to be stunning. Did you know due to its lakes and rivers, there are more shorelines in South Dakota than in Florida?! One thing about Mount Rushmore that I was never taught in school, was that prior to the carvings of the presidents, it was named The Six Grandfathers Mountain and was considered a sacred place to the Lakota people. There is so much history beyond the presidential carvings in the Black Hills that is so important to learn. For us, a trip to see Mount Rushmore would also include a trip to see the Crazy Horse Memorial.



Well, there is a lot here. Like all history, there are many angles and perspectives to always consider. While the celebration of President’s Day may have changed over time, I hope that you are able to score some great deals, but most importantly teach your children the history of our nation–the good, the bad, and the ugly. The more we can hear from the many voices of history, the more we can grow and move forward together.


For the history about other holidays click below:

The History & Meaning of Valentine’s Day


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