Inclusive Holiday/Interfaith Observation Calendar

Our HGAR community represents a wide range of ethnic, cultural, faith, and religious communities. To assist us in promoting an inclusive community and help enhance the understanding among groups, we are presenting this interfaith/cultural calendar of observances to help increase awareness of and respect for religious obligations, and ethnic & cultural festivities that may affect members of our community. In addition, we added our industry’s monthly themes for 2023 for acknowledgment and awareness.

This calendar provides a broad outline of significant days within major faith traditions, as well as ethnic and cultural celebrations. We encourage you to use this calendar and add to it as you wish. We hope this helps you become more aware, recognize our colleagues’ days of observances/holidays, and avoid the unintentional exclusion of those whose faith/religious traditions are not currently observed nationally.

2023 Inclusive Holiday/Interfaith Observation Calendar


January


01 - New Year’s Day
The first day of the year in the Gregorian calendar is commonly used for civil dating purposes.

16 - Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
The birthday of civil rights activist Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is on January 15th, but it is observed on the third Monday in January.

22 - Lunar New Year • Confucian, Daoist, and Buddhist
Also known as the Spring Festival, an important festival celebrated at the turn of the traditional lunisolar Chinese calendar.

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February


Black History Month
Celebrates Black History and African American culture in the United States.

01 - National Freedom Day
Commemorates the signing of the 13th Amendment, which abolished slavery in 1865.

14 - Valentine's Day
Celebrates the idea of romantic love. 

20 - President's Day
Honors all past presidents of the United States of America

22 - Ash Wednesday • Christian
The first day of Lent for Western Christian churches, a 40-day period of spiritual preparation for Easter, not counting Sundays.

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March


Woman's History Month
Commemorating and encouraging the study, observance, and celebration of the vital role of women in American history

08 - International Women’s Day
Celebration of the economic, political, and social achievements of women worldwide.

17 - St. Patrick’s Day • Christian
Christian Feast day of the patron saint of Ireland. In the U.S., a secular version is celebrated by people of all faiths through appreciation of all things Irish.

22 - April 20 - Ramadan • Islamic [starting sundown 03/22 through sundown 04/20]
A month of fasting, reflection, prayer, and community observed by people of the Muslim faith. Participating adult Muslims fast between sunrise and sunset.

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April


02 - Palm Sunday • Christian
Observed the Sunday before Easter/Pascha to commemorate the entry of Jesus into Jerusalem.

05 - 13 - Passover/Pesach • Jewish [starting sundown 04/05 through sundown 04/13]
The eight-day “Feast of Unleavened Bread” celebrates Israel’s deliverance from Egyptian bondage.

07 - Good Friday • Christian
Known as Holy Friday in Eastern Christianity, it commemorates the Crucifixion of Jesus on the Friday before Easter/Pascha.

09 - Easter • Christian
Known as Pascha in Eastern Christianity, it celebrates the resurrection of Jesus.

22 - Earth Day
A day held to demonstrate and promote environmental awareness and calls for the protection of our planet.

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May


Asian Pacific American Heritage Month
(aka. Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month) Recognizes the contributions and celebrates the culture of Asians and Pacific Islanders in the United States.

05 - Cinco de Mayo
In 1862 Mexican forces defeated French occupational forces in the Battle of Puebla.

14 - Mother's Day
Children of all ages show appreciation for their mothers and mother figures.

21 - World Day for Cultural Diversity
Recognizes cultural diversity as a source of innovation, exchange, and creativity, as well as the obligation to create a more peaceful and equitable society based on mutual respect.

21 - 22 - Eid al-Fitr • Islamic [starting sundown 05/21 through sundown 05/22]
The “Feast of the Breaking of the Fast” marks the end of Ramadan, the holy month of fasting from dawn until dusk.

29 - Memorial Day
A federal holiday in the United States for remembering the people who died while serving in the country's armed forces

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June


LGBTQ+ Pride Month
Commemorates the anniversary of June 28, 1969, Stonewall riot in New York City, the incident that initiated the modern LGBTQ+ rights movement in the United States.

18 - Father's Day
Children of all ages show appreciation for their fathers and father figures.

19 - Juneteenth
Originally commemorating the announcement of the abolition of slavery in Texas in 1865, it is now celebrated throughout the U.S. to honor African-American freedom and achievement.

25 - 27 - Shavuot • Jewish [starting sundown 06/25 through sundown 06/27]
The “Feast of Weeks” celebrates the covenant established at Sinai between God and Israel and the revelation of the Ten Commandments.

28 - 29 - Eid al-Adha • Islamic [starting sundown 06/28 through sundown 06/29]
Commemoration of Ibrahim's willingness to sacrifice his son in obedience to a command from God. Marks the end of the annual Hajj (pilgrimage to Mecca).

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July


04 - Independence Day
Anniversary of the United States Declaration of Independence in 1776.

26 - Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Day
Commemorates the 1990 signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act, which guarantees equal opportunity for people with disabilities.

26 - 27 - Tish'a B'av • Jewish [starting sundown 08/26 through sundown 08/27]
Mourning of the destruction of the First and Second Temples in Jerusalem in 586 BCE and 70 CE.

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August


23 - International Day for the Remembrance of the Slave Trade and its Abolition
Memorializes the tragedy of the transatlantic slave trade, coinciding with the anniversary of the uprising in Santo Domingo (today Haiti and the Dominican Republic) that initiated its abolition.

26 - Women’s Equality Day
Commemorates the 1920 passage of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, granting women the right to vote.

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September


04 - Labor Day
Celebrated the first Monday in September in recognition of U.S. workers.

15 - October 15 - Hispanic Heritage Month
Celebrates the contributions, heritage, and culture of Hispanic and Latino Americans.

15 - 17 - Rosh Hashanah • Jewish [starting sundown 09/15 through sundown 09/17]
Beginning of the Jewish New Year and the first of the High Holy Days, which marks the beginning of a ten-day period of penitence and spiritual renewal.

24 - 25 - Yom Kippur • Jewish [starting sundown 09/24 through sundown 09/25]
The “Day of Atonement” marks the end of the Ten Days of Penitence that begin with Rosh Hashanah.

29 - October 06 - Sukkot • Jewish [starting sundown 09/29 through sundown 10/06]
The week-long “Feast of Booths” commemorates the 40-year wandering of the Israelites in the desert on the way to the Promised Land.

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October


09 - Indigenous People Day
Celebrates and honors Native American history and culture. [The second Monday of October is also marked as a U.S. federal holiday, Columbus Day. Many people are opposed to the celebration of a man who led and committed atrocities against Indigenous people. Some states and cities in the U.S. have officially changed the day to Indigenous People’s Day.

11 - Coming Out Day
Encourages honesty and openness about being lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender. Commemorates October 11, 1987, when 500,000 people marched on Washington, DC, for gay and lesbian equality.

12 - Diwali • Hindu
Also called Deepavali, “Festival of Lights”, celebrates the victory of good over evil, light over darkness, and knowledge over ignorance.

31 - Halloween
The eve of All Saints’ Day. A celebration observed on the eve of the Catholic holiday All Saint's Day, which has also evolved into a secular celebration of the dead, scary stories, costumes, and "trick or treating" for candy.

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November


Native American Heritage Month
Celebrates and honors the history and culture of Native Americans and indigenous people in the United States.

01 - All Saint's Day • Christian
Commemorates all known and unknown Christian saints. Eastern Christianity observes it on the first Sunday after Pentecost.

07 - Election Day
A day set by U.S. law for the election of public officials.

10 - Veteran's Day
Honors military veterans and the U.S. Armed Services.

23 -Thanksgiving
Following a 19th-century tradition, it commemorates the Pilgrims’ harvest feast in the autumn of 1621. It is considered by some to be a "national day of mourning," in recognition of the conquest of Native Americans by colonists.

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December


10 - Human Rights Day
On this day in 1948, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

07 - 15 - Hanukkah • Jewish [starting sundown 12/07 through sundown 12/15]
Also known as the Festival of Lights, Hanukkah is an eight-day Jewish holiday celebrating the rededication of the Second Temple in Jerusalem in the second century A.D. It is often celebrated with the lighting of menorah candles, as well as traditional foods, games, and gifts.

25 - Christmas • Christian
Commemorates the birth of Jesus.

26 - January 01 - Kwanzaa
A seven-day celebration honoring African American heritage and its continued vitality. “Kwanzaa” means “first fruits (of the harvest)” in Swahili.

31 - New Year's Eve
In the Gregorian calendar, New Year's Eve, the last day of the year, is on December 31. In many countries, New Year's Eve is celebrated at evening social gatherings, where many people dance, eat, and drink. etc.

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