Andorra Celebrates Our Lady of Meritxell Day, a national holiday. The holiday has been celebrated as early as 1278. About 2.5 times the size of Washington, DC, Andorra is located in the Pyrenees between Spain and France. Approximately 85,000 people live in the country, and Andorra la Vella is the capital. Tourism accounts for about 80% of GDP.
Macedonia celebrates Independence Day. Macedonia peacefully gained its freedom from Yugoslavia in 1991. This land-locked country, about the size of Vermont, has dry summers and cold, very snowy winters. Over two million people live in Macedonia, and Skopje is the capital.
Michelangelo’s David was unveiled in Florence in 1504. Michelangelo started working on the seventeen foot marble statue in 1501. For many years it was displayed in an open piazza, but it was moved to the Accademia Gallery in 1873. A replica was then placed in the statue’s original location.
Pledge of Allegiance was read publicly for the first time in 1892. Francis Bellamy wrote it so that people could declare their patriotism. It has undergone four changes, and it was formally adopted by Congress in 1942.
Margaret Gorman became the first Miss America in 1921 in Atlantic City, New Jersey. The pageant was created in an effort to keep people in Atlantic City after Labor Day.
Star Trek premiered in 1966. Only 79 episodes were created for the original series. However, it has spawned movies, cartoons, and other series.
President Gerald Ford pardoned Richard Nixon in 1974. Nixon had resigned on August 9, 1974 to avoid impeachment. Gerald Ford became president that day. He decided to pardon Nixon to bring calm and unity to the country. Some experts believe those goals were not accomplished.
Byron Barton (born Pawtucket, Rhode Island, 1930) writes and illustrates books for children. His works include A Girl Called Al and I Want to Be an Astronaut.
Antonin Dvorak (born Nelahozeves, Czechoslovakia, 1841; died Prague, Czechoslovakia, May 1, 1904) composed music. He wrote nine symphonies, plus numerous operas, chamber music, and cantatas. One of his most famous compositions is Humoresque, written for piano in 1894.
Michael Hague (born 1948) illustrates books for children. He has illustrated The Wind in the Willows and The Hobbit.
Jack Prelutsky (born Brooklyn, New York, 1940) writes poetry. Idea: Children really enjoy his work. They could try The New Kid on the Block, published in 1984. They could illustrate some of his poems. They could visit his website at: Jack Prelutsky.
Richard the Lionheart (born Oxford, England, 1157; died France, April 6, 1199) ruled England from 1189 to 1199. Idea: Children could find out more about his exciting life. He actually spent very little time in England.
Jon Scieszka (born Flint, Michigan, 1954) is a children’s author. His books include Math Curse, The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales, and Time Warp Trio series. Children could visit his website at: http://www.jsworldwide.com/.
Peter Stuyvesant (born Scherpenzeel, Netherlands, 1610; died New York, New York, February 1672) was the last governor of New Netherlands. The citizens did not like his harsh and cruel ways, so they did not support him when the British came into the harbor.