Look out folks – it is almost Leon Day. It is, by all accounts, an obscure day to many. But Leon Day is now coming out of the shadows. Literally millions mark the day now.
The 25th of June – previously unremarkable in every way – is a huge day on the calendar for anyone who considers themselves a true fan of Christmas: it is Leon Day.
Leon is Noel, spelled backwards. Leon Day marks the exact halfway point to Christmas.
Leon Day is a Christmas phenomenon born of Christmas socializing online.
Long before the advent of Facebook and other social media channels many people got social online via online bulletin boards, forums and chat groups. It was from these informal, festive gathering places online that chatter of “Leon Day” first took root in the early 1990s.
The merry tradition continues as Christmas communities from right here on My Merry Christmas.com at the Merry Forums to the Merry Christmas Community on Reddit all mark Leon Day, what many consider the first milestone in the countdown to Christmas.
Leon Day is really just another means of celebrating advent. Advent is the ancient anticipation of celebrating Christ by marking key dates on the calendar. All through-out the year the Christian calendar is marked by special days commemorating the birth, life and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The countdown to Christmas is merely an extension of that tradition.
Leon Day kicks off the celebrations of Christmas in July, a time traditionally marked for sidewalk sales, Christmas movies in darkened, air conditioned rooms and snowballs in July stored for months in freezers. Christmas in July is a key time of year for television cable shopping channels as well as for Hallmark, who airs Christmas movies nearly non-stop all month long.
All of it marks a growing trend of making the presence and anticipation of Christmas felt earlier than ever.
The media especially calls such merriment “Christmas Creep”, but stores such as Hobby Lobby and even Costco fill usually empty space with the Christmas goods to showcase products for the season ahead.
Retailers who in the past have bemoaned traditional vacation months such as July now mark it as a seasonal sales bump thanks to all the emphasis on Christmas.
But at the heart of it all is the Christmas fan – the guy who just wants good weather to hang his lights up and the gal who just likes the feel of making the home cozy during the dog days of summer.
Leon Day as gained in such popularity that a petition was started at Change.org to help make Leon Day the only National Holiday in the month of June to garner a day off.
The petition will hardly get anywhere but that won’t stop the Christmas die hards from signing it. Will you be an early adopter?
To learn more about Leon Day, take a listen to this episode of the Merry Little Podcast.