The Top 50 Geek Holidays

Geek HolidaysGeeks come in all flavors and declare their passion for everything from literature to politics to Star WarsCollege provides them with an excellent opportunity to band together with like-minded individuals and celebrate or promote the causes, people and studies that concern them most.

Nearly every day on the calendar boasts its own obscure or niche holiday — so many more exist beyond these! Lift high and proud that geek flag, and take the time to enjoy these mostly esoteric treats.

Our favorites have to be Sys Admin Day, and of course, Star Wars Day.

Arts and Culture

  1. International Dadaism Month: The beauty of International Dadaism Month is that it preserves the absurdist core of the movement. Participants can enjoy it whenever and wherever they like, celebrating as they please. Truly a wonderful holiday!
  2. National Kazoo Day: Music majors and their friends whip out their kazoos at some point during the fourth week of January and promote the fun, quirky instrument.
  3. Inspire Your Heart with Art Day: As its name implies, those who enjoy creative pursuits are encouraged to spend January 31st contemplating what the visual and performing arts mean to them.
  4. Tell a Fairy Tale Day: Fans of fairy tales and mythology can indulge their love on February 26th by reading, discussing or creating imaginative stories of their very own.
  5. National Grammar Day: Every March 4th since 2008, language fanatics gather to celebrate the dying art of using proper grammar, no matter the tongue.
  6. Tolkien Reading Day: On March 25th, the date of Sauron’s defeat, devotees of J.R.R. Tolkien sit down and read his works either alone or in groups.
  7. National Library Workers Day: The American Librarian Association sets aside one day in April a year in order to honor the hardworking staff members that keep these essential institutions running. Patrons are asked to nominate their favorite librarians, read about the political issues that impact them and visit the libraries themselves for the day’s designated activities.
  8. Record Store Day: Held on the third Saturday of April, Record Store Day honors music and music retail culture with special releases and events that vary from participating location to participating location.
  9. Free Comic Book Day: BEST. DATE. EVER. Publishers big and small print out free comic books for their fans, and participating shops host contests, signings and other activities to let attendees cut loose with their geekery on the first Saturday in May.
  10. Glorious Revolution and Wear Lilac Day: Terry Pratchett’s hilarious fantasy series Discworld has touched millions of readers worldwide, who commemorate Glorious Revolution (a major event in the books) on May 25th. Following Pratchett’s tragic diagnosis of Alzheimer’s, his loyal fans began pulling the traditions he created and wearing lilac to show their love and support as part of the day’s activities.
  11. Towel Day: Douglas Adams fans pay tribute to his pop culture sensation The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by making sure not to forget their towels on May 25th.
  12. International Jazz Day: International Jazz Day is celebrated on May 29th of every year, with individuals, musicians, venues, record stores and any others with a musical bent offering something different for fans of the genre.
  13. Bloomsday: One does not have to wander the streets of Dublin in the footsteps of Leopold Bloom to enjoy this celebration of James Joyce’s lauded Ulysses. Taking place on June 16th, the setting of the book, literature lovers worldwide honor the classic novel with readings, re-enactments, lectures and discussion groups.
  14. Barbershop Music Appreciation Day: Spend July 13th learning to love an oft-overlooked musical genre — or even participating in a performance!
  15. Bad Poetry Day: Celebrating Bad Poetry Day on August 18th is simple, easy and absolutely hilarious. Most participants share their awful, embarrassing junior high and high school scribblings with one another, though some of the more brave ones may pluck poems from history as well.
  16. International Read Comics in Public Day: Proud comic book fans attempt to squash the stigma of the medium they enjoy by reading their favorites in a public setting on August 28th. Some may want to post their pictures up on the event’s official Flickr page, too!
  17. Sewing Machine Day: Get creative on September 10th and sew up some goodies for friends and family. Those who don’t know how to sew can use the day as motivation to start learning!
  18. International Talk Like a Pirate Day: Theatre aficionados eager for an excuse to perform all day (and pretty much anyone else who enjoys shameless acts of nerdery) look forward to September 19th, where they have an excuse to channel their inner pirates for the world to see.
  19. Tolkien Week: Whichever calendar week hosts September 22nd receives the honor of the American Tolkien Society’s Tolkien Week designation. Hobbit Day falls on the aforementioned date on account of Frodo and Sam’s birthdays, but the entire week generally involves relevant lectures and reading groups.
  20. National Punctuation Day: The festivities around National Punctuation Day change every year, with fun activities such as poetry and baking contests. Whenever September 24th starts sneaking up around the corner, check the holiday’s official website for this year’s events.


  1. National Puzzle Day: Whether Sudoku, video games or crosswords provide the entertainment, geeks of all kinds flex their sexy cerebellums by challenging themselves with their favorite puzzles on January 29th.
  2. World Thinking Day: Girl Scouts typically honor World Thinking Day, but there’s no reason why college students can’t spend February 22nd contemplating and promoting harmony amongst cultures, either.
  3. World Press Freedom Day: Any college student passionate about free speech will appreciate the UN’s designation of May 3rd as one to fight for this basic human right.
  4. Star Wars Day: “May the Force be With You” is a common greeting (and goodbye) on May 4th.
  5. International Museum Day: Around the world, communities band together on May 18th in order to thank their local museums with events based around an annually changing theme.
  6. Geek Pride Day: A rather obvious choice for college-age nerds looking to celebrate, of course, but beneath such a broad banner, any number of exciting things can happen on May 25th!
  7. X-Day: July 5th is a designated devival holiday for the parody cult/religion Church of the Subgenius, where members await the apocalypse and the apparition of extraterrestrial and supernatural beings. SubGenii in New York have started celebrating with a satirical take on Burning Man, replacing the famous music festivals anti-capitalism values with turning a profit for underground artists and performers. Some adherents burn effigies of founder “Bob” as well. Not a holiday (or a website) for the easily offended.
  8. National Constitution Day: Political science geeks honor the signing of the United States Constitution by distributing pocket versions of the historical document, hosting Preamble recitation contests and more. Though one should make an effort to understand it on days other than September 17th, of course.
  9. National Ask a Stupid Question Day: Stupid questions really do exist, and on September 28th participants can finally let loose with the worst of the worst that they have bottled up all year.
  10. Festivus: Two days before Christmas, people fed up with the materialism and hubbub of Christmastime emulate Frank Costanza and participate in feats of strength and the airing of grievances around the Festivus pole.

Science, Mathematics and Technology

  1. Software Freedom Day: Computer lovers worldwide host different events that promote open-source software, usually revolving around demos and lectures.
  2. Square Root Day: 9 times a century, the number of the month and the day equal the last 2 numbers of the year when multiplied. Math geeks all approach the festivities differently, but Scientific American found a Facebook group suggesting the consumption of root vegetables and starches cut into exact squares.
  3. Data Privacy Day: Sponsored by some of the biggest names in the computer industry,- Microsoft, Google, Intel, AT&T and more, January 28th is dedicated to teaching people how to protect themselves from identity and data theft. As a relatively new holiday, the possibility for festivities remains endless.
  4. Darwin Day: Charles Darwin revolutionized biology (if not science as a whole) with his theories regarding evolution, and his birthday — February 12th — inspires grateful scientists (and science fans!) to enjoy the day in various ways.
  5. Learn About Butterflies Day: All participants become honorary lepidopterists on March 14th, a day dedicated to studying butterfly biology and behavior. Or making crafts featuring their likeness. Or both.
  6. Pi Day: Held every year on, appropriately enough, March 14th, many educational institutions and museums (most notably San Francisco’s amazing Exploratorium) celebrate with pie and enjoyable activities.
  7. Bunsen Burner Day: On Robert Bunsen’s birthday, March 31st, science (especially chemistry) geeks pay homage to the inventor of the Bunsen burner that makes many of their experiments possible. The only explicitly expressed activity revolves around reflection. But there’s no reason why the day should pass without something getting burned or melted!
  8. National Dark Sky Week: Every year in April, participants in National Dark Sky Week are asked to reduce their nocturnal light pollution habits in order to better appreciate the visual treats awaiting them in the heavens.
  9. National DNA Day: Teachers, students, schools and museums take advantage of April’s National DNA Day to celebrate and spread awareness of the building blocks of life itself.
  10. World Health Day: The World Health Organization has declared April 7th World Health Day, and participants are encouraged to spread information about diseases and conditions currently devastating the planet. Grim as that sounds, there’s still fun ways to promote awareness through games and contests on campus.
  11. National Eight Track Tape Day: Pay homage to retro audio technology on April 11thby trading, talking about and/or listening to the once-ubiquitous eight track.
  12. Big Wind Day: Scientists recorded the fastest wind ever on April 12, 1934, and it clocked in at 231 MPH. For aficionados of all things weather, today would be a great day to start some new traditions. Like eating beans, obviously.
  13. Earth Day: Probably one of the least obscure holidays listed here, even non-geeks with little familiarity with the environmental sciences still spend April 22nd promoting green initiatives. A great holiday for all kinds!
  14. National Lab Day:The very first National Lab Day occurred on May 12, 2010 and sought to encourage scientific and technological inquiry among younger students — but there’s no reason why the college-aged can’t participate as well! Use this holiday to explore new and exciting corners of a favored subject and share the love with others.
  15. Pi Approximation Day: Math geeks eager to celebrate Pi Day more than once a year can also set up an extravaganza on July 22nd as well.
  16. SysAdminDay: On the last Friday in July, show those overworked, underappreciated system administrators some love with songs, cartoons, images and more.
  17. Collect Rocks Day: Geologists, geographers and hobbyists in both fields can spend September 16th adding to their collections or sharing and swapping with others who find rocks fascinating.
  18. Mole Day: Schools worldwide celebrate Mole Day from 6:02 AM to 6:02 PM every October 23rd as a means of promoting the joy of chemistry. Festivities vary from institution to institution, but almost all of them involve both mole the animal and mole the measuring unit.
  19. National Stress Awareness Day: The first Wednesday in November has been designated National Stress Awareness Day in the UK, and adherents promote healthy, healing rest and relaxation through games and other activities. Allowing anxiety to build up damages the body’s necessary processes, so spending a day encouraging others to loosen up makes for a refreshing change of pace.
  20. Evolution Day: When Darwin Day just isn’t enough, supporters of the controversial, acclaimed scientist can spend November 24th commemorating the 1859 publication of The Origin of the Species by Means of Natural Selection with readings, lectures and discussion groups.

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