Holidays in Westarctica

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Grand Duke Travis leading a toast during Westarctica's 15th Anniversary Celebration in 2016

Holidays in Westarctica fall into one of three categories, as established with Westarctican Ordinance WO-2020-002, but specific holidays were not actually codified into law until 5 October 2020 with the passing of ordinances WO-2020-003, WO-2020-004, and WO-2020-005.

National holidays fall into one of three categories:

  • National Holidays
  • Cultural Holidays
  • Days of Observance.

History

During the first years of Westarctica's founding, when it was still known as the Achaean Territory of Antarctica, the only official holiday was 4 June, the birthday of Grand Duke Travis. The date of national independence, 2 November, was recognized, but not publicly celebrated. This tradition continued until 2016, when Westarctica Day became a recognized holiday and was elevated to the status of national holiday to be celebrated by all citizens of the country.

In 2018, a list of public holidays was created by the Grand Duke, and slightly modified on advice from members of the Royal Council. This list had no structure or precedence. In 2020, the holidays were codified by law. All of the previously-existing holidays were retained in the new structure, however, they were placed into different categories.

Holidays in Calsahara

Prior to being liberated by Westarctica in 2017, the Colony of Calsahara had a rich tradition of holidays that had begun when it was founded in 2009. The national holiday of Calsahara was originally 4 June, celebrating the founder's birthday. However, it was briefly changed to 15 March, which memorialized the first day the Flag of Calsahara was raised over the territory. Finally, in 2012, it was changed to 24 November, which is the actual day that Calsahara was founded as well as the birthday of Prince Daniel Nicholas, who briefly ruled as King of Calsahara.

Following the liberation of Calsahara by Westarctica's military in 2017, the only holidays that were carried over to Westarctica were the Ides of March (15 March) and Christmas (25 December). Incidentally, the day Calsahara was liberated immediately became a holiday.

National Holidays

These dates are considered to be the most significant, and will be handled as closure days for the government, as much as is possible.

Date Holiday Name Established By Notes
New Year's Day 1 January WO-2020-003 Celebration of the new calendar year.
Voting Holiday First Friday in February WO-2020-003 Although voting occurs over a three-day period, the first day of voting shall be a holiday to ensure maximum turnout.
Earth Day 22 April WO-2020-003 Intended to be celebrated by volunteering with conservation organizations and efforts.
Founder's Day 4 June WO-2020-003 Celebration of the birthday, contributions, and personage of Westarctica's founder, Grand Duke Travis.
Midwinter Feast 23 June WO-2020-003 Last of the three-day Midwinter celebration, this is a continuation of the Antarctic tradition.
Citizen's Day First Monday in August WO-2020-003 Day to celebrate and recognize all citizens of Westarctica. Commemorates the week the Grand Duke processed over 1,000 citizenship applications.
Outreach Day Third Monday in October WO-2020-003 Recognizing the establishment of Westarctica, Inc. Intended for volunteering in local community.
Westarctica Day 2 November WO-2020-003 Commemorates the mailing of the Claimant Letter in 2001. Celebration of nation's independence, culture, and history.
Summer Holiday 21 December WO-2020-003 Commemorates the first day of Summer.

Cultural Holidays

These dates are not given any official preference in Westarctica. Instead, this category identifies those celebrations likely to be observed by significant enough portions of the population that the government should try to avoid hindering the ability for those portions of the populace from being able to request time off. Private businesses in Westarctica are encouraged to treat them accordingly. When these observances coincide with National Holidays or another Cultural one, there will be no alternate observance.

Holiday Name Date Established By Notes
Eid al-Fatir Floating Day (sometimes twice in a year) WO-2020-004 Islam holiday
Valentine's Day 14 February WO-2020-004 Originally a Christian feast day, now more commonly a celebration of the significant others in our lives.
Easter Floating Sunday in the Fall WO-2020-004 Christian holiday
Winter Solstice Roughly 21 June WO-2020-004 Pagan holiday
Midwinter 21 and 22 June WO-2020-004 Continuation of Antarctic tradition and Westarctican cultural celebration.
Westarctican Pride Third Friday in June WO-2020-004 Gender and Sexual Minorities celebration
Yom Kippur Floating Day in Spring WO-2020-004 Jewish holiday
First Night of Hanukkah Floating Day in Late November or December WO-2020-004 Jewish holiday
Summer Solstice Roughly 21 December WO-2020-004 Pagan holiday
Christmas 25 December WO-2020-004 Christian holiday often celebrated secularly

Days of Observance

While not explicitly holidays, these days commemorate people and events of significance to Westarctica. There are no government closures, although there may be a ceremony, speech, or press release from the Sovereign or Prime Minister.

Holiday Name Date Established By Notes
Balleny Day 14 January WO-2020-005 Commemorates annexation of Balleny Islands in 2005.
Constitution Day 15 February WO-2020-005 Commemorates signing of Constitution into law in 2020.
Technology Day 3 March WO-2020-005 Celebrates recapture of .com domain name in 2019, as well as nation's origins as an online community.
Ides of March 15 March WO-2020-005 Date to reflect on deeds of former Sovereigns and the lessons they can teach us, both good and bad.
Coup Day 2 June WO-2020-005 Celebrates the Great Return in 2010.
Order of the Orca Founding Day 10 July WO-2020-005 Recognizes establishment of nation's highest honor in 2019. Celebrates achievements and contributions of notable non-Sovereign Westarcticans.
Flandrensis Day 24 September WO-2020-005 Commemorates end of hostilities in 2010 and ongoing friendship between our two nations.
Calsahara Day 29 October WO-2020-005 Celebrates Westarctican liberation of the Kingdom of Calsahara in 2017.
Amundsen Day 14 December WO-2020-005 Celebrates first expedition to reach the South Pole, and first known humans to step foot on Westarctica, in 1911.