Remember back in grade school every October the teachers would all have us learn this poem, 1492?  Well in case you may have forgotten, here is a snippet:

IN 1492

In fourteen hundred ninety-two
Columbus sailed the ocean blue.

He had three ships and left from Spain;
He sailed through sunshine, wind and rain.

He sailed by night; he sailed by day;
He used the stars to find his way.

Alright, so 519 years have come and gone since the trip across the pond led Chris to a new world.  And we have been thankful since.  You see though, the actual "humble" beginnings of the celebration of the day are traced back to San Francisco in 1869.  That is the first recorded time people got together and celebrated Columbus.

It was not until the 20th century that a state wide celebration was held.  1907 in Colorado.  30 years later the excitement of having a day off swept the nation and it was declared as a holiday by President Franklin D. Roosevelt.   Since 1971 it has been celebrated on the second Monday of October and will remain that way forever.

There will be parades, parties, lots of great food and drink.  But most of all just a time for most people to be off work.  That is unless you live in Hawaii, Nevada or California.  As a citizen of one of theses fine states, well, you still have to work today.  It is one of those holidays that some things will be closed and others will be open.  Same for city offices.  It varies form city to city and state to state.  Best advice check with your city to see if they are open today and if you have business to attend to, it may have to wait until tomorrow.

So enjoy the day.  It is one of the last 4 or 5 days this year when you can take the day off free gratis!  Thank you Christopher Columbus!