National Monkey Day is an unofficial international holiday which takes place every year. The holiday is intended to celebrate monkeys and all things simian, from macaques to marmosets. The event is celebrated worldwide and is also referred to as World Monkey Day and International Monkey Day.
During the holiday people are encouraged to learn something new about the highly intelligent primates. The event is celebrated in all parts of the world and is particularly popular in the USA, Canada, India, Pakistan and the UK.
But what is the significance of National Monkey Day and when was the event first celebrated? Here is everything you need to know.
When is National Monkey Day?
National Monkey Day takes place every year on 14 December. The event first started in 2000 and it is celebrating its 22 year anniversary.
How did National Monkey Date start?
Casey Sorrow and Eric Millikin were the founders of National Monkey Day and formed the holiday during their time studying art at Michigan State University.
The pair celebrated the event for the first time in 2000, with fellow art students and used the term on the Fetus-X comic strip which led to the holiday being popularised. The event has grown in popularity each year and is celebrated in many different countries around the world.
What is the purpose of National Monkey Day?
National Monkey Day was created with the purpose of celebrating monkeys, lemurs, tarsiers, apes and other non-human primates. Its purpose is to raise awareness about all the different types of monkey in the world whilst also highlighting the issues that they face on a daily basis.
Environmental activists and animal rights groups are huge supporters of the event which helps raise awareness of endangered species such as the Eastern Lowland Gorilla in Africa.
How is the event celebrated?
There are lots of different ways to celebrate National Monkey Day and many zoos hold annual Monkey Day events. For example, the Lahore Zoo in Pakistan holds an annual celebration which features art competitions and educational events about monkeys, including over a hundred children wearing monkey masks.
Tallinn Zoo in Estonia celebrates the holiday by auctioning artwork created by chimpanzees with all the money raised supporting animal welfare charites.
The holiday is also celebrated through costume parties which are intended to help draw attention to issues related to simians, such as medical research, animal rights and evolution. Often people hold competitions to see who can find the best monkey costume whilst also seeing who can perform the most convincing monkey impression
Mainstream American films such as Planet of the Apes and King Kong are also popular during the holiday and many people watch the films as part of their Monkey Day festivities.