The MOSAIC Cross-Cultural Center invites you to utilize this Monthly Observances & Celebrations Calendar to learn more about the various celebrations and holidays observed by members of the MSU Texas community. Use this calendar as a way to increase your awareness and understanding of cultures and religious occasions. To maximize inclusivity, it is essential to consider these days of remembrance, observance, and celebration when planning events.

Please note that in many cultures and religions, observances fall on different days each year as some cultures follow a Lunar calendar or other time measurement system. For some holidays observed on the Lunar calendar, the observance begins at sunset of the preceding day.

This list of observances and celebrations does not include all cultural and religious observations. If we are missing an observance and will like to recommend one, please email mosaic@msutexas.edu

Click here for MOSAIC's quick event guide for when you plan on celebrating observances or celebrations. 


Dates  Holiday/Observance 
 1 January New Year's Day
The first day of the year in the Gregorian calendar, commonly used for civil dating purposes.
 6 January Dia de los Reyes (Three Kings Day)
Also known as Epiphany, this holiday is traditionally celebrated in Spain, Latin America, and amongst Hispanic communities in the U.S. Three Kings Day marks the arrival of the three wise men who brought gifts to Jesus on the 12th day following Christmas. Until recently, in many Latin American regions, children received gifts on this day rather than Christmas day.
 January 7 Orthodox Christmas
Many Orthodox Christians annually celebrate Christmas Day on or near January 7 to remember Jesus Christ’s birth, described in the Christian Bible. This date works to the Julian calendar that pre-dates the Gregorian calendar, which is commonly observed.
 16 January Martin Luther King Jr. Day
This day commemorates the birth of Martin Luther King Jr., the recipient of the 1964 Nobel Peace Prize and an activist for nonviolent social change until his assassination in 1968.
 22 January  Lunar New Year
This festival celebrates the beginning of a new year in China and other Asian countries and cultures whose calendars follow the cycle of the moon.
 1 February - 28 February Black History Month 
Since 1976, the month has been designated to remember the contributions of people of the African diaspora.
 15 February Nirvana Day (Parinirvana Day)
Celebrates the day when the historical Buddha achieved Parinirvana, or complete Nirvana, upon the death of his physical body. Sometimes celebrated on February 8
 18 February Maha Shivaratri
Also called Shiva Ratri, the Great Night of Shiva, is a festival in reverence of the god Shiva. The festival is celebrated at the 13th night or 14th day of the waning moon in the Hindu calendar (month of February or March of the English calendar).
 20 February Presidents Day
Honors all past presidents of the United States of America.
 1 March - 31 March Women's History Month
Started in 1987, Women's History Month recognizes all women for their valuable contributions to history and society.
 6 March (evening) - 7   March (evening) Purim
The “Feast of Lots” marks the saving of the Jewish people of ancient Persia from extermination.
 7 March (evening) - 8   March (evening) Holi
Also known as the Festival of Colors, Holi is largely celebrated across India and marks the shift from winter to spring and the triumph of good over evil. 
 22 March (evening) - 21   April (evening) Ramadan
Considered one of the holiest seasons for Muslims, Ramadan honors the revelation of the Qu'ran. During this time many Muslims fast from food and drink during sunlit hours as as way to draw closer to God and build upon spiritual values and practices.
 30 March Rama Navami
Celebrates the birthday of Rama, king of ancient India, hero of the epic Ramayana, and seventh incarnation of Vishnu.
 5 April (evening) - 13   April (evening) Passover
In Judaism, this eight-day festival commemorates the emancipation of the Israelites from slavery in ancient Egypt. The observance is celebrated with a Seder meal, storytelling, and other traditions.
 7 April Good Friday
Commemorates the Crucifixion of Jesus Christ on the Friday before Easter. Known as Holy Friday in Eastern Orthodox Christianity.
 9 April Easter
Most widely known as a Christian holiday celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ, this observance has been noted as having ties to Christianity, Paganism, and Judaism, among other faiths.
 21 April - 22 April Eid al-Fitr
In Islam, Eid al-Fitr marks the end of the month of Ramadan, which is the holy month of fasting. During this celebration, Muslims show gratitude to God as they end the fasting period.
 1 May - 31 May Jewish American Heritage Month
This observance recognizes the diverse contributions of Jewish people and culture to American society.
  1 May - 31 May Asian Pacific American Heritage Month
This observance commemorates the immigration of the first Japanese people to the United States on May 7, 1843, and marks the anniversary of the completion of the transcontinental railroad on May 10, 1869. The majority of the workers who laid the tracks on the project were Chinese immigrants. 
 25 May (evening) - 27   May (evening) Shavuot
In Jewish tradition, the “Feast of Weeks” celebrates the covenant established at Sinai between God and Israel, and the revelation of the Ten Commandments. 
 29 May Memorial Day
This observance is a day of remembrance for those who sacrificed their lives in service of the United States of America.
 1 June - 30 June PRIDE Month
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Pride Month was established to recognize the impact that LGBT individuals have had on the world. LGBT groups celebrate this special time with pride parades, picnics, parties, memorials for those lost to hate crimes and HIV/AIDS, and other group gatherings.
 19 June Juneteenth
Also known as Freedom Day or Emancipation Day, Juneteenth is observed as a public holiday in 14 U.S. states. This celebration honors the day in 1865 when slaves in Texas and Louisiana finally heard they were free, two months after the end of the Civil War. June 19, therefore, became the day of emancipation for thousands of African-Americans. 
 28 June (evening) - 29   June (evening) Eid al-Adha
This Islamic celebration follows the completion of the annual Hajj pilgrimage, during which many Muslims travel to the holy city of Mecca. This 2-4 day observance commemorates the Prophet Ibrahim's devotion to Allah (God).
 4 July Independence Day
Anniversary of the United States Declaration of Independence in 1776.
 6 September - 7   September Krishna Janmashtami
Celebrates Krishna’s birthday, Vishnu’s eighth incarnation on earth.
 15 September - 16   October Hispanic Heritage Month
This month is celebrated in recognition of the diverse cultures of Hispanic Americans and their contributions to American society.
 15 September (evening) -   17 September (evening) Rosh Hashanah
Rosh Hashanah means "head of the year" in Hebrew. The day honors the creation of the world and initiates 10 days of introspection practiced in Judaism.
 24 September - 15   September Yom Kippur
Also known as the "Day of Atonement", Yom Kippur marks the end of the 10 days of introspection that follow Rosh Hashanah. This day is considered the holiest day of the year in Judaism.
 1 October - 31 October LGBTQ+ History Month 
Marks and celebrates the lives and achievements of lesbian, gay bisexual and transgender people in the United States.
 10 October Indigenous Peoples' Day
Indigenous People's Day has been established as an alternative to the historically celebrated Columbus Day, giving recognition to the indigenous populations affected by colonization.
 15 October - 24 October Navaratri
Nine-day Hindu festival celebrating the triumph of good over evil. It worships God in the form of the universal mother commonly referred to as Durga, Devi or Shakti, and marks the start of fall.
 6 October (evening) - 8   October (evening) Shemini Atzeret
In Jewish tradition, “The Eighth [Day] of Assembly” observed on the day immediately following Sukkot.
 7 October (evening) - 8     October (evening) Simchat Torah
“Rejoicing in the Torah” celebrates the conclusion of the public reading of the Pentateuch (first five books of the Hebrew Bible) and its beginning anew.
 24 October Diwali
In Hinduism, Diwali is the festival of lights that celebrates the victory of good over evil and light over darkness. 
 1 November - 30       November Native American Heritage Month
This month is designated to recognize and inform about experiences and cultures of the first Americans in the United States, their sacrifice in the establishment of this country, and their significant contributions to its growth.
 1 November - 2 November Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead)
This observance is traditionally celebrated in Mexico and Mexican communities to honor and welcome the return of souls of deceased family members and loved ones with food, offerings, and more.
 11 November  Veterans Day
This observance provides an opportunity to honor and thank veterans for their bravery and sacrifice as former service members of the United States Armed Forces.
 24 November Thanksgiving Day
Following a 19th century tradition, it commemorates the Pilgrims’ harvest feast in the autumn of 1621. It is considered by some to be a "national day of mourning," in recognition of the conquest of Native Americans by colonists.
 3 December  International Day of Persons with Disabilities
Raises awareness about persons with disabilities in order to improve their lives and provide them with equal opportunity.
 10 December International Human Rights Day
On this date in 1948, the UN General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the most translated document in the world, which proclaims the inalienable rights that all human beings are entitled to - regardless of identity status.
 16 December - 24   December Las Posadas
A religious festival traditionally held in Mexico and parts of Latin America. Translating to ‘The Inns’ in Spanish, Las Posadas is an important part of the Christmas festivities.
 18 December (evening) -   26 December (evening) Hanukkah/Chanukah
In Judaism, Hanukkah celebrates the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem with an 8-day "festival of lights". Celebratory events include nightly menorah lighting and special prayers, among others.
 25 December Christmas Day
This holiday originated in Christianity to commemorate the birth of Jesus and since has evolved into a celebration observed in both religious and secular contexts.
 26 December - 1 January  Kwanzaa
Created in 1966 by Dr. Maulana Karenga, this African American and pan-African holiday is a seven-day cultural festival celebrating family, community, and culture. The celebration brings together communitarian values and practices of Continental African and African American culture, and is centered around seven core principles.