Year
Day
Holiday
State
2014
17 FebruaryMondayGeorge Washington/
Thomas Jefferson Birthday
AL
17 FebruaryMondayPresident's DayAK CA CO HI ID
IL MD ME MI MN
ND NE NH NJ NV
OH OK OR PA SC
SD TN TX VT WA
WV WY
17 FebruaryMondayLincoln / Washington /
Presidents' Day
AZ MT UT
17 FebruaryMondayGeorge Washington Birthday /
Daisy Gatson Bates Day
AR
17 FebruaryMondayWashington's BirthdayCT MA MO MS NY VA DC

The Washington’s Birthday public holiday is more commonly referred to as Presidents Day in the United States and is dedicated to honoring George Washington, the first president of the United States. It is considered to be the first public holiday declared specifically to celebrate the life and accomplishments of one individual.

As a federal holiday, Washington’s Birthday gives non-essential federal employees the opportunity to take a day off in observance of the holiday. Schools are also closed and there is no postal service on this date. Most businesses stay open during the Presidents Day holiday.

Presidents Day sales are common across the United States and many Americans associate the holiday with vehicle sales because of the prevalence of discounted prices at car dealerships available during the Presidents Day weekend.

Schools often dedicate classwork to George Washington around the time of his birthday, and townships may provide events that teach residents about the importance of Washington’s contributions to the formation of the United States.

The United States Senate has a long-standing tradition to read George Washington’s Farewell Address every year in observance of his birthday. This tradition first started in 1862 and is still being practiced.

The public holiday is observed on the third Monday in February however George Washington’s actual birthday was February 22, 1732. Because the observed date of Washington’s Birthday is now set for the third Monday in February, it is impossible for the holiday to ever fall on the Washington’s actual birthday. The latest possible date for the public holiday is February 21.

The holiday has been observed on a Monday since 1971. This ensures that federal employees and schoolchildren will be allowed to have a day off of work and school if Washington’s actual birth date falls on a weekend.

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