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Other festivities in the United States which are not national holidays.

Flag Day: June 14th is the anniversary of the first official American flag, thanks to a resolution of the Second Continental Congress in 1777. It was through the work of President Woodrow Wilson in 1916 was established the party that became official in August 1949 by an act of the United States Congress.

It is not a federal holiday, the only Pennsylvania adopted it as a public holiday; It is celebrated with parades, speeches and ceremonies in the schools. Its aim is to promote respect for the emblem of national unity. Most citizens fly the flag in front of their houses and work-places.

Halloween: 31st October, the eve of All Saints’ Day (a festivity that is becoming popular in Italy), is celebrated by American children even more than in Britain. They dress up and go from house to house asking for fruit, candies or money. If you don’t give them anything they play tricks on you, like emptying your garbage bin on your doorstep or throwing flour at your windows.

Figure symbol of Halloween is the “Jack-o-lantern” (night watchman), a gourd with the grimace of a demon inside with a lighted candle .

St Valentine’s Day: in most western country the 14th February is know as Lovers Day, a celebration of romantic love . The most common symbols are the heart and images of Cupid .

In the USA, as in Britain, people send anonymous cards and gifts to their loved ones.

St Patrick’s Day: March 17th is the feast of the patron saint of Ireland. Every year there is a huge parade in New York City with as many as 125,000 people of Irish origin taking part. They all dress in green and march past St Patrick’s Cathedral, up Fifth Avenue to Eighty sixth  street. They then drink a lot of Irish beer!

Since the United States is a nation of many religious and ethnic groups, there are many different feast days or special customs celebrated throughout the year in the different towns and cities. The large Italian-American community organizes many parades in honour of patron saints.

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