Columbus Day in Arizona in 2024

  How long until Columbus Day?
Columbus Day
  Dates of Columbus Day in Arizona
2025 Oct 13
Mon, Oct 13Regional Holiday
Mon, Oct 13Regional Holiday
2024 Oct 14
Mon, Oct 14Regional Holiday
Mon, Oct 14Regional Holiday
2023 Oct 9
Mon, Oct 9Regional Holiday
Mon, Oct 9Regional Holiday
2022 Oct 10
Mon, Oct 10Regional Holiday
Mon, Oct 10Regional Holiday
2021 Oct 11
Mon, Oct 11Regional Holiday
Mon, Oct 11Regional Holiday

This national holiday commemorates the exact date when Christopher Columbus first set foot in the Americas

  Columbus Day in other countries
Columbus Day internationally
  Which regions observe Columbus Day in 2024?
National Holiday Regional Holiday Not a public holiday Govt Holiday
  ArizonaOct 14
  USAOct 14

When is Columbus Day?

This U.S. federal holiday commemorates the date when Christopher Columbus first set foot in the Americas. In the USA it is observed on the Second Monday in October.

Though Columbus Day is one of the 10 U.S. legal federal holidays, it is not considered a major one. There will be no postal service.

It is a Federal Reserve Bank holiday, so while banks may open, some transactions will not be processed. Most businesses remain open and retail stores may run special sales.

The New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq remain open on this federal holiday.

In addition to a state level, in many cities, the day is now celebrated as Native Americans’ Day or Indigenous People’s Day.

Which states observe Columbus Day?

Columbus Day is no longer observed in every state. For a detailed list of which states observe Columbus Day, please use our state by state guide.

Even if a state observes Columbus Day as a holiday, some state offices may be still be open.

In addition to a state level, in many cities, the day is now celebrated as Native Americans’ Day or Indigenous People’s Day. In Hawaii, Discovery Day is celebrated on the 2nd Monday in October, in recognition of the Polynesian discoverers of the Hawaiian Islands. It is not a legal state holiday

According to data from the Society for Human Resource Management, only 14% of organizations closed on Columbus Day in 2014.

History of Columbus Day

Columbus' voyages across the Atlantic Ocean initiated the European exploration and colonization of the Americas.

While the first voyage in 1492 was immensely significant, Columbus did not actually reach the American mainland until his third voyage in 1498.

Instead, while trying to find a sea route to India, he made landfall on an island in the Bahamas that he named San Salvador.

Did you know?

It is now generally accepted that Columbus was not the earliest European explorer to reach the Americas and that Viking sailors had ventured as far as Newfoundland around 1000 AD.

While there had been celebrations in 1792 to mark the 300th anniversary, Columbus Day was first officially proclaimed by President Benjamin Harrison in 1892, to mark the 400th anniversary of Columbus' landing in the Bahamas. The proclamation said, “On [the anniversary] let the people, so far as possible, cease from toil and devote themselves to such exercises as may best express honor to the discoverer and their appreciation of the great achievements of the four completed centuries of American life.”

With a large Italian immigrant population at the time, Colorado was the first US state to make Columbus Day an official holiday. Franklin Roosevelt established the first federal observance of Columbus Day in 1937. Since 1971, the holiday has been celebrated on the second Monday in October.

A Controversial Holiday

Due to its historical and cultural impact, Columbus Day is the most controversial federal holiday. Columbus did not "discover" the continent. The indigenous people had been living in the Americas long before his arrival. He was also not the first European to reach the shores of North America. Nearly 500 years before Columbus's arrival, Norse explorer Leif Erikson established a European settlement in Greenland in AD 980. 

More importantly, by his own admission, the Italian explorer and his crew mistreated the locals, using violence to get what they wanted and using some as slaves.

For Italian Americans, Columbus Day is the centerpiece of Italian Heritage Month, celebrated every October. They argue that the holiday honors the history of immigration, not the explorer. They believe the holiday should be retained or changed to something more appropriate, like Italian Heritage Day.

Timeline of Columbus Day

1792 – The first Columbus Day celebration is organized by The Society of St. Tammany and held in New York City (300th anniversary of Columbus’ landing).

1892 – President Benjamin Harrison issues a proclamation establishing a celebration of Columbus Day on the 400th anniversary of Columbus’ landing.

April 7th 1907 – Colorado becomes the first state to declare Columbus Day a legal holiday.

1920 – Columbus Day begins being celebrated annually.

October 12th 1937 – First federal observance of Columbus Day, under President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

1971 – Columbus Day becomes a legal federal holiday in the United States. Presidential Proclamation (PL90-363) states that the observance of Columbus Day is always on the second Monday in October.

How is Columbus Day celebrated?

The largest celebration of Columbus Day is in New York City, which hosts a huge parade. Communities with large Italian-American populations may hold special Columbus Day festivities.

Columbus Day Quiz

Test your knowledge of Christopher Columbus and this federal holiday by taking our Columbus Day Quiz.

Did you know?

Three facts about Columbus Day

Christopher Columbus' real name was Cristoforo Columbo. He was born in 1451 in Genoa, Italy

Colorado was the first US state to make Columbus Day an official holiday. It became a US federal holiday in 1937

Nobody is sure where Columbus is buried as he was reburied many times in different places around the world

More facts about Columbus Day

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