Presidents Day 2016

Presidents Day 2016

Picture of Theodore Roosevelt seated on a horse. In the background there is a train car and several other men on horseback.

President Theodore Roosevelt at Yellowstone.
Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Presidents Day was set up to commemorate Washington’s birthday. When I was a kid…and maybe when you were a kid…there were two presidential holidays: one for Washington’s birthday on Feb 22 and another for Lincoln’s on February 12. In 1971 they combined the two for a holiday, even though they still have the birthdays separate in some states. It is now a day to commemorate all presidents.

So many presidents have done a bit for the outdoors and environment. Theodore Roosevelt established the first National Park: Yellowstone. And he formed the National Park System. LBJ, or more so Lady Bird Johnson, started a whole program to beautify America and clean up our roads. I remember as a kid driving to Colorado in the summer and seeing trash in all the ditches. Heck I remember dumping my ash tray out at a stop light (yes I was a pig). Lady Bird turned the whole country’s consciousness to beautifying our roadways. And Bill Clinton was great at establishing National Monuments.

So the question is, how to approach? My suggestion is a small history of the holiday, starting this year with Teddy Roosevelt. I can admit by bias here: he is one of my heroes. Next time we can point out someone else.

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