There are enough wacky, trivial holidays and “national days” to fill up an entire calendar year. (Sorry we are that Talk Like Yoda Day we missed on May 21.)
And with the real holiday of Memorial Day marking the unofficial start of summer, we rounded up some of the best and weirdest celebrations from June to August along with our suggestions for observing them.
June 1: National Running Day
Grab your running shoes and get outside for a run today. Run solo or join up with several Columbia running groups. A group called 621 Ninjas meets at 5:30 a.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 621 Chatham St. If you can stand to get up even earlier, the Dam 5 am’ers meet at 5 a.m. Wednesdays at Lexington Middle School. Might as well call this National Get Up Early Day.
June 3: National Doughnut Day
Whoever said, “The more colorful the diet, the better,” was talking about sprinkles, right?
Krispy Kreme and Dunkin Donuts usually offer free doughnuts in honor of the holiday.
June 4: National Trails Day
June 10: National Iced Tea Day
If you’re willing to drive, the town of Summerville, aka the self-proclaimed birthplace of sweet tea, will once again celebrate National Tea Day by attempting to break a Guinness World Record with a single 2,400 gallon glass of sweet tea. Party to follow.
And for adults, there’s always the Firefly Distillery on Wadmalaw Island. Sweet tea vodka anyone?
June 18: National Go Fishing Day
This weekend, drop a line into the Saluda River, reel in a smallmouth bass in the Broad River, or head to Lake Monticello to catch some catfish. You’ll have to find your own secret spots, though.
June 26: National Take Your Dog to Work Day
It’d be great to have furry friends in the office every day, but if this is not an option where you work, you can still give Fido some extra love on this day by taking him to a local dog park.
Emily Douglas Dog Park in Shandon, the Barking Lot Dog Park at Saluda Shoals Park and the NoMa (North Main) Bark Park is in Earlewood Park are good options. Note that the NoMa requires a membership.
July 1: National Creative Ice Cream Flavors Day
Sweet Cream Co. on Main Street is always coming up with unique flavor combinations, like blueberry mojito, banana curry and Earl Grey.
Pelican’s Snoballs, while not exactly ice cream, also has a bevy of flavors to try, from cantaloupe to dill pickle.
July 6: National Fried Chicken Day
July 14: National Hot Dog Day
Sandy’s Famous Hot Dogs at 825 Main St. exists for this day. There’s also the Haute Dog Lady food truck and Buddy’s Saucy Dogs in Lexington. If you really want to do it right, grab a dog at the Fireflies game at Spirit Communications Park tonight.
July 22: National Hammock Day
At Earlewood Park, you can pick a spot off the beaten path for your hammock in the shady woods. Just watch out for errant discs from the disc golf course.
July 30: National Dance Day
Sign up for a class at The Dance Floor at 717 Lady St., and shake what ya mama gave ya. Classes are for ages 18 and up, and range from cardio hip-hop to jazz. This is not a “tights and leotards” kind of place. And guys are welcome, too.
Aug. 9: National Book Lovers Day
Obviously, the library is the place to be today. There’s Reader’s Morning Out, a daytime book group for adults at 10 a.m. at the Richland Library Ballentine, and Book Banter, a discussion of recent bestsellers, at 7 p.m. at the St. Andrews Library.
Aug. 16: National Tell a Joke Day
Like puns, limericks or dad jokes? Today is YOUR day. Crack a joke to your co-workers, or if you’re feeling brave, head to Comedy Roulette at Art Bar in the Vista. Open mic standup comedy is every Tuesday starting at 9 p.m. Sign up to perform for five minutes.
Aug. 17: National Thrift Shop Day
Can we go thrift shopping? Buy, sell or trade at Sid & Nancy in Five Points, rummage through Consign It at 4600 Forest Drive, or channel your inner Macklemore at Palmetto Thrift Store at 4068 Fernandina Road. Donate, too!
Aug. 27: National Just Because Day
How about jumping on a trampoline, or running through a spray pool, just because? Hiwire Trampoline Park in Irmo has a late-night jump tonight from 8-11 with lasers and dubstep music. 15 and up only. $10. 1019 Broad Stone Road.
Or live it up and play in those jets of water that shoot up from the ground. For locations, visit columbiaparksandrecreationfoundation.org.
Erin Shaw, email@example.com