What is ‘Galentine’s Day’ And How Did It Get Its Start?

Over the past few years, the term “Galentine’s Day” has become popular across the United States. You may hear about it more frequently around Valentine’s Day, but that’s because these two holidays are so close together. But what exactly is “Galentine’s Day” and when is it celebrated?

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The term ‘Galentine’s Day’ got its start on the television show ‘Parks and Recreation’

You can thank Amy Poehler for making Galentine’s Day popular in the U.S. Poehler played Leslie Knope on the NBC network show Parks and Recreation, and she was the first one to bring Galentine’s Day to life. The original episode aired on February 11, 2010, and nobody would have guessed it would become anything more than the subplot of a primetime show. “What is Galentine’s Day? Oh, it’s only the best day of the year,” Knope says in the episode.. And from there, a new February holiday was officially in the books. (Well, it’s not actually an official holiday — but still.)

The holiday is celebrated annually on February 13

According to Parks and Recreation, women get together on February 13, the day before Valentine’s Day, to celebrate their friendships with one another. The holiday helps women reconnect with their friends; if they’re not celebrating Valentine’s Day this year, it still gives them something to look forward to and a way to celebrate the other people they love. Another episode about the holiday aired in 2014, but the original episode is the one to which most people refer when they discuss the holiday.

Although it’s not a formal holiday, many women have begun joining in the celebration

There is no true way to celebrate Galentine’s Day. Every woman is different, and every friend group is different, so anything goes. Although the holiday isn’t a formal holiday, it has become popular over the past decade. And now, there are even Galentine’s Day cards available for purchase in some stores. In the episode, Knope organizes a brunch for her favorite gals, plus gets a special gift for each of them. But in real life, some women simply go out for drinks or dinner; others might get together at someone’s house for a wine night. Those who celebrate the holiday can decide how they want to do it.

The holiday not only brings women closer but also empowers them

While Poehler likely didn’t intend for Galentine’s Day to become a national holiday when she produced the episode, it has taken on much more meaning over the past decade than simply a funny scene in a television show. It reminds women that they should support one another, and it empowers them and helps them remember that even if they don’t have a special Valentine in their life at the moment, they are still surrounded by their Galentines.

In 2018, long after Parks and Recreation had ended, Poehler and her former co-stars got together to celebrate the holiday they created. Everyone was thrilled to see that the women still kept in touch. We have Poehler and the show’s writers to thank for the creation of the holiday.

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