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February in the USA

What’s On in February in the United States


Here are the festivals and events that happen each February in the USA. For news on temporary exhibits, concerts, or other occasional events, visit my USA Travel Blog.

All month long - Black History Month. February was designated Black History Month in 1976. It is a month to celebrate the achievements and recognize the history of African-Americans. Learn more about Black History Month from About's Guide to African-American History. You can also explore the places where Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. made history as an African-American Civil Rights leader.

February 2 - Groundhog Day. This odd holiday has its origins in the German holiday of Candlemas. That tradition holds that if the hedgehog (or groundhog) emerges on February 2 and sees his shadow, six more weeks of winter will follow. German settlers brought this folk tradition to the United States, specifically to Pennsylvania. It is Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, near Pittsburgh, where this holiday has been observed since 1886. Learn more about Groundhog Day.

First Sunday in February - Superbowl. America’s most-watched sporting event is the National Football League’s (NFL) Superbowl, which pits the year’s winners of the National Football Conference (NFC) and the American Football Conference (AFC) against one another. The Superbowl is typically held in a sunny location, such as Miami or Phoenix, and is accompanied by much fanfare, including press events, special days for fans, tailgating events, etc. Learn more about the Superbowl.

As Early as February 3 - Mardi Gras and the Beginning of Lent. Mardi Gras (Carnival) festivities are plentiful in the USA, but most especially in New Orleans. Learn more about upcoming dates for Mardi Gras and Mardi Gras in the USA (hint: it's not just in New Orleans). See also March in the USA.

February 14 - Valentine’s Day. While not an official holiday, Valentine’s Day is very popular in the United States, with many couples exchanging cards, flowers, and glances over romantic dinners. To find out more about the day, About’s Guide to Honeymoons and Romantic Travel has put together a special Valentine’s Day website, which includes a round-up of romantic restaurants in a U.S. city near you.

Third Monday of February - Presidents Day. An official federal holiday, which means that banks, stock markets, and government offices are closed, Presidents Day celebrates all U.S. presidents. However, the holiday was originally conceived in order to celebrate the birthday of George Washington, whose was born on February 22, 1732. Presidents Day is a good time to learn about American history. Though, truth be told, many Americans see the whole three-day weekend as an opportunity to take advantage of winter sales or to take a quick winter holiday.

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