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April 20, 2021
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March 2021 Dates to remember

By: Cassandra May Albaugh
February 26, 2021

There are so many dates and events to consider in the month of March. No single article can cover them all. I’ve selected a few to write about. More can be found at https://nationaltoday.com/march-holidays. You can also review last year’s article at: The Community Voice. In no particular order, let’s look at my choices.

The March event that first entered my mind was the issuance of the first “Shelter-in-Place” order in Sonoma County. We are approaching the one-year anniversary of that order. Since last March, COVID-19 and the resulting actions to contain it have changed all our lives. On March 17, 2020, Dr. Sundari Mase, the County’s Health Officer, issued that order to commence at midnight on March 18. It followed similar orders issued by other Bay Area counties. It was supposed to last only three weeks. It was intended to avoid overloading our hospitals and critical care units as the virus spread. Since then, additional orders have been issued as cases and deaths rose in the county and the state. I sincerely hope that my article next March will not include March 18 as a date to remember.

However, given what has occurred since last March, it is fitting to recognize March 19 as Certified Nurses Day. On that day annually we recognize and celebrate these nurses and their contributions to the health and well-being of our country. One of the largest professions in America, there are over 3.8 million Certified Nurses practicing over 200 nursing specialties and sub-specialties. The event was created in 2008, jointly by the American Nurses Association and the American Nurse Credentialing Center. March 19 was chosen because it was the birthdate of Dr. Margretta Madden Styles. She was a pioneer in the 1970s in pursuit of nursing certifications.

Doctors are also recognized this month on March 30. On that day we celebrate them and the medical advances they brought to our health system in America. Other countries recognize them too, however not all do so on March 30. This day of recognition originated in 1933 in Winder, GA. The date was chosen based on the first anniversary of a doctor using ether anesthesia. He was Doctor Crawford W Long. In 1958 a congressional resolution started the process of making the day national and on October 30, 1990 President George H. W. Bush signed it into law. 

March 17 is St. Patrick’s Day, a well-known day of celebrating with parades, foods and beverages. Last March, the annual New York Parade was cancelled because of the pandemic. The first time in 256 years. But did you know that March is also Irish American Month? First celebrated in 1991, March was chosen because of St. Patrick’s Day. During this month we celebrate and recognize the many contributions Irish immigrants and their descendants have made to American society. Over 1 million Irish immigrants fled the Potato Famine in Ireland in the 1850s and came to America. A little-known fact is that 9 of the 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence were of Irish heritage. 

You might also not know that March 3 is National Anthem Day. The Star-Spangled Banner, our national anthem, came from a poem written by Frances Scott Key. He was aboard a British Man-of-War ship arranging a prisoner release when the British commenced bombardment of Ft McHenry in Baltimore, MD. His surprise the following morning that “our flag was still flying” was his inspiration. The poem was sung as song with differing variations until President Woodrow Wilson hired five musicians to come up with a standardized version in 1917. Renowned composer John Philip Sousa was one of those musicians. Their version was first played on December 5, 1917. The song officially became our country’s anthem when President Herbert Hoover signed it into law in 1931. 

March 12 is National Girl Scouts Day. I’d be lying if I said my love for Thin Mints, Tagalongs, and other girl scout cookies didn’t influence me to include this day in my article. I was a scout and love all the various scouting programs so this was an easy choice. The date was chosen because the first girl scout meeting was organized and held on this date. Juliette “Daisy” Gordon Low gets credit for doing so in 1912 in Savannah, GA. 

There are many more that could be listed. Lent and Easter, March Madness, Cinco De Marcho, Transgender Day of Visibility and International Women’s Day to name a few. But I hope you enjoyed reading about the ones I chose for this year’s article.