Love Thy Neighbor Day is a holiday that is meant to bring together three
concepts (or tenets as we call them):
Bring your immediate community together
Bringing your community together with other communities, and
Reaching out to others
We derived these three tenets through researching what other organizations
have done in the past on days of the same or similar names. After analyzing our
data, we found that most events incorporated at least one of these three
concepts in their activities.
Like all holidays of this sort, there is usually some basic guidelines behind
its observation. Love Thy Neighbor Day has three based upon the three tenets
The holiday is universal.
The date holiday will be "officially" July 20th as a national &
international day of celebration. However, each organization, state,
organization & municipality is highly recommended to have a second day of
celebration as it best suits their own needs.
Time is taken to advance the three tenets of the holiday: (1)
Neighborhood, (2) National/World Community and (3) Charity.
These three guidelines are explained in more detail below.
This is meant to be a universal holiday. The holiday is not to be
restricted to a single religion, culture or country. Bringing your
community closer together and reaching out to others is something we should all
do regardless of where we live or how we live our lives.
Date of Observation
The official date of the national & international observance of this holiday
will be the Sunday following July 20th (unless the 20th is itself a Sunday).
What is the significance of this date, you ask? July 20th is the
date that the first person (Neil Armstrong) stepped foot on the moon. Taking all
of the politics aside for the space race and getting him up there in 1969, this
is a day that everyone, regardless of where you life or what you believe, can
associate with. It also takes the meaning of the community to a whole new level
- a true universal community of the world as a whole. However, this is not a
steadfast rule and an organization or municipality may celebrate the holiday on
or around the date. The holiday may also be part of a weekend long or a full
There were other dates that were considered. The
three dates that came in
as close contenders were (1) the fourth Sunday in September, which has been
proclaimed by three Presidents in the 1970's as
National Good Neighbor Day,
(2) the Sunday before Memorial Day, (called
Neighbor Day) which has
been recognized in Rhode Island to remember a race relations in Westerly, Rhode
Island and (3) The third Sunday in February for
Neighbor Appreciation Day in Seattle,
which has been ongoing since 1995.
However, these dates were associated with local events and customs. The
landing on the moon, we believe was a more universal event. This is also
the reason for each organization or community hosting a second Neighbor Day
which can be molded for the specific needs of the community.
The Three Tenets of the Holiday
The first tenet is about bringing together the people within your own
neighborhood. The definition of neighborhood is different to each of us.
A neighborhood could be the apartment complex you live in, your section of town,
your block or the your entire town, depending on its size. The important
thing is that you are comfortable with what you consider to be your
Now comes the hard part - bringing people together and not just people who
would come together anyway, like a Sunday mass. However, churches or other
religious institutions might be a good place to start. For instance, hold a
Church picnic which is open to members of the community who are not regular
members of the church. Your organization could also hold a charity bazaar,
put on a free puppet show for kids, or sponsor any public event that will bring
people of the community together.
We also hope that big dinners or feasts will become a traditional way to top
off the holiday. An organization could host a community dinner (for free or a
nominal fee). Individuals could also host their own get together for
friends and family. You could invite two or three people from your
community to this gathering that you would not normally invite.
Another tradition we would like to see instilled into the celebration of this
holiday is for everyone to approach a person from their community that they do
not know and introduce themselves. Hopefully many new friendships within
the community will take root and blossom.
2) National & World Community
The second tenet is for the promotion of goodwill towards others outside your
own neighborhood and maybe bring all (or at least some of) the people of your
country or the world a little closer together.
The easiest way of helping others who life in other communities or other
countries is by sending donations. There are a great number of charities
that you can donate to who will make sure that the contributions are used to
help people everywhere in the world. You can give to a charity that will
help everyone, e.g., Red Cross, or to one that goes directly a specific part of
the world (e.g., Tsunami Relief).
This holiday would be a good reason to have a fundraising event. In
this manner you or your organization are pulling the community together to do
something for other communities across the country and across the world.
This is a good time to reconnect with friends and families that live in
distant communities. You can use part of the day to call them, write them
a letter or send an email. You might also want to send them a gift basket
of sweets or a bouquet of flowers.
The overwhelming majority of the events we have found on the web in
connection with a Neighbor Day event have to do with charity. On this holiday,
everyone should give something of themselves to a charity. Money
contributions would be nice (and always welcome), but on this holiday, it is
asked that you do a little more personally and become involved with a charitable
activity. You can contact your local house of worship or community
center to see what type of events are going on (some may be listed on this
website as well). The activity itself does not need to take place on the day of
the holiday - but you should make a commitment (if only to yourself) that you
will do something over the next two months.