Father’s Day celebrations have been around for centuries, but do you know the history of Father's Day? The first Father’s Day celebration occurred on June 19, 1909, in Spokane, Washington. Sonora Smart Dodd first had the idea of a day to honor fathers after listening to a Mother's Day sermon at church and thinking that fathers should be honored as well. She went home and told her father about her idea for a special day to honor him.
He liked the idea so much that he spent most of the day outside sitting proudly, showing off his new chain with a watch on it. The following year Sonora got busy trying to establish Father's Day as an official holiday, and beginning in 1910, there were small celebrations held across the United States.
In 1966 President Lyndon B Johnson issued a presidential proclamation designating the 3rd Sunday in June as Father's Day, and in 1972 it became a permanent national holiday. In 1994 President Bill Clinton signed a law that moved the date from the third Sunday of June to the first Sunday of July, which is considered part of summer, so more people are able to take advantage of celebrations. Since then, Father’s Day has become a time to recognize the many father figures in our lives.
The dates of the celebration of Father's Day differ, and the customs and traditions change from one country to another. Let’s take a look at some of the ways Father’s Day is celebrated around the world.
The United Kingdom celebrates Father’s Day on the first Sunday of September. The celebration was started by Lady Maria Montessori in 1910 and has been celebrated annually since then. It is said that her followers began to celebrate this occasion because they were inspired by Sonora Smart Dodd’s Father's Day celebrations at Spokane, Washington.
People celebrate the day by sending messages to their Papa and flashing banners or balloons in public. They also create a special cake for this occasion with 9 candles, representing each family member.
Happy Father’s Day in Welsh: Sul y tadau hapus
In Spain, Father’s Day is celebrated on March 19. It was started by the Sons of Peace and Justice Association back in 1982 to commemorate the 5th anniversary of their association's founding. However, this day wasn’t mentioned as an official holiday until 1995 under King Juan Carlos I. Today, children express their appreciation and love for their fathers by giving them a present, writing them a letter or taking them out to eat.
Happy Father’s Day in Spanish: Feliz día del padre.
Father’s Day is celebrated on the 3rd Sunday of June in mainland China with the usual gifts, dinners, and family outings. However, this wasn’t always the case, during WWII, Father’s Day was actually celebrated on August 8th.
The Republic of China wanted to celebrate the men who died and honor the fathers. This tradition dropped off in the Mainland, and the western celebration of Father’s Day was adopted. But, Taiwan and some smaller cities in China still honor the original “Father’s Day” in August.
I wish you a Happy Father’s Day in Chinese: 祝你父亲节快乐 (zhù nǐ fù qīn jié kuài lè)
Father’s Day is a new, fairly new celebration in India. People in India observe Father’s Day on the third Sunday of June. Most Indian families prefer celebrating it by dining in restaurants or going out for a family picnic.
Cultural shows are also organized in schools and clubs to honor dads on this special day. This is a day for children to pay respect and for fathers to spend quality time with their families.
Happy Father’s Day in Hindi: पिता दिवस की शुभकामना (pita divas kee shubhakaamana)
Russia doesn’t exactly celebrate Father’s Day, the equivalent in Russia is a celebration that has evolved from a military event to a tribute to men who defend the peace of Russia.
February 23 is Defender of the Fatherland Day, which is usually celebrated by a parade for the Russian Armed Forces. Sometimes, the holiday is celebrated at home where families gather and give the men in their family presents.
I wish you a Happy Father’s Day in Russian- С днём отца!
Defender of the Fatherland Day- День защитника Отечества
Unlike other countries where Father’s Day celebrations are on the third Sunday in June, Father’s Day in Australia is celebrated on the first Sunday of September. The date has been moved to September mostly for convenience's sake; it was moved to later in the year because it gives consumers a break from the “shopping fatigue” of the holiday season.
Father’s Day in the land down under coincides with the start of Spring and is celebrated with family BBQs, gift-giving, and parties.
Happy Fathers Day in Australian: Happy Father's Day Mate!
The Southeast Asian country celebrates mothers on Queen Sirikit's birthday and fathers on King Bhumibol Adulyadej's birthday on December 5th.
On this date, the King gives an annual speech, while tradition has it that children give their fathers and grandfathers the Canna flower, which is considered to have a masculine association.
Happy Father's Day in Thai: สุขสันต์วันพ่อ (S̄uk̄hs̄ạnt̒ wạn ph̀x)
Germany does things a bit differently. On the 40th day of Easter, Ascension Day.
German men have a tradition of celebrating Father’s Day on the holiday known as "Männertag" which translates to Man’s Day where men organize hikes and gatherings with plenty of beer and food.
Happy Father’s Day – German Alles Gute zum Vatertag!
Father’s Day in France is held on the third Sunday in June and became popular thanks to a company called “Flaminaire” in 1949. They made lighters and marketed them as gifts for smoking fathers, a few years later Father's Day was recognized as a National Holiday.
Today, gifts and dinners have replaced lighters. But the idea of honoring one’s father can also be linked to the much older celebration of Saint Joseph on March 19.
Happy Father’s Day – French Bonne fête Papa!
Father’s Day in Brazil is taken very seriously, as a family is vital to the culture. It’s also all about the meat; families gather together for large BBQs either at home or at a Brazilian steakhouse.
It is celebrated on the Second Sunday in August to honor Saint Joachim, the patron of fathers and grandfathers.
Father’s Day in Portuguese: Dia dos Pais
Just like it does for Mother’s Day, Mexico puts on more festivities to honor its fathers than most places.
On the third Sunday in June, children give gifts to their fathers, then celebrate with food and music.
Some also participate in the 21-kilometer race in Mexico City, called the “Carrera Del Día del Padre".
Happy Father’s Day in Spanish: Feliz día del padre.
In Japan, Father's Day is on the third Sunday in June. Japanese children usually give their dads a small Father’s Day gift, like origami, sweets, food, and alcohol.
On this day, a huge fest is made with Japanese delicacies, and seafood is traditionally served.
Happy Father’s Day in Japanese: 父の日おめでとう Chichi no hi omedet.
Father’s Day celebrations in Ireland take place on the third Sunday in June.
Like other countries, people in Ireland give their fathers gifts like cards, books, neckties, and wallets. Many take their fathers for picnics or go out for dinner.
Happy Father’s Day in Irish Gaelic: Lá na nAthaireacha faoi shona daoibh.
Whatever the date or the type of celebration, Father's Day in some regard remains the same all over the world.
Fatherhood is both a demanding and gratifying endeavor. No matter how you may choose to celebrate, honor, or show appreciation for your father figure, there are endless ways to do it. Start by spending quality time with him, either in person or by phone, and then check out our Father’s Day Store to see what other options might be available.
At the end of the day, it is most important to simply say, ‘Thank you for all that you do!’
We hope you enjoyed our article, Happy Father's Day! Do You need some ideas for the celebration of Father's Day? We have articles on our blog with tips and useful information on how to decide on the perfect present for dad!