American Holidays

Federal Holidays

Many government offices close on federal holidays and some private businesses may close as well. If the holiday falls during the weekend, the government may observe it on a different day. Federal employees receive pay and many receive time off for federal holidays.

2017 Federal Holidays

Monday, January 2: New Year’s Day*

Monday, January 16: Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr.

Monday, February 20: Washington’s Birthday

Monday, May 29: Memorial Day

Tuesday, July 4: Independence Day

Monday, September 4: Labor Day

Monday, October 9: Columbus Day

Friday, November 10: Veterans Day**

Thursday, November 23: Thanksgiving Day

Monday, December 25: Christmas Day

*January 1, 2017 (the legal public holiday for New Year’s Day), falls on a Sunday. Most federal offices will be closed on Monday, January 2, 2017, in observance of New Year’s Day.

**November 11, 2017 (the legal public holiday for Veterans Day), falls on a Saturday. Most federal offices will be closed on Friday, November 10, 2017, in observance of Veterans Day.

On Inauguration Day, Friday, January 20, 2017, many federal offices in the Washington, DC, area will be closed.

Commonly Celebrated Holidays and Observances

Some holidays honor specific groups and events, such as Valentine’s Day, Earth Day, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Flag Day, and Halloween. These are not federal holidays. Some holidays and observances receive Presidential proclamations.

Ethnic and Religious Holidays

Various ethnic and religious groups in the United States celebrate days with special meaning to them. Some of these holidays include Easter for Christians, the High Holy Days for Jews, Ramadan for Muslims, Day of Vesak for Buddhists, and Diwali for Hindus.