Craig school children learn origin of Presidents’ Day |

Craig school children learn origin of Presidents’ Day

Children at Moffat County Christian Academy answer questions about America's first President — George Washington — during Debbie McLain's Presidents' Day presentation.
Sasha Nelson/staff

CRAIG — From the bonnet on her head to the stockings covering her toes, Debbie McLain was dressed in the style of a colonial woman for presentations about Presidents’ Day, held at the Moffat County Christian Academy and Boys & Girls Clubs on Thursday.

“The holiday started in 1971, when the uniformed holiday act was passed. This combined holidays and standardized them to give workers a three-day weekend,” McLain said. “Business jumped on and saw it as a boon to the economy, as they could run sales. It is still legally known as George Washington’s birthday, even though it’s not at all close to his birthday.”

While four Presidents were born in February, none of them were born Feb. 19, the day designated for the holiday in 2018.

Depending on the calendar — Julian or Gregorian — the date of George Washington’s birthday fell on Feb. 11, in his time; it is now Feb. 22, by the Gregorian calendar.

McLain uses Presidential trivia in the educational programs she has provided since 2010, one of the service projects she does as a member of the Augusta Walihan Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution.

She wears period costumes to grab the students’ attention.

“I change it up. Sometimes I’m a woman, and sometimes I’m dressed as a man in formal Minutemen attire to get their attention and bring history to life,” she said.

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