National Tartan Day

National Tartan Day is a celebration of Scottish heritage which takes place on April 6th each year. This day, also known as Tartan Day, has been celebrated since 1982 in New York and has been celebrated since 1986 in Canada. It has since spread to other areas of the Scottish diaspora. This holiday is usually celebrated with parades that feature bag pipes and Highland dancing.

The History of National Tartan Day

National Tartan Day was first celebrated by the New York Caledonian Club, New York Mayor Ed Koch and the New York State Governor Hugh Carey as a one-time celebration of Scottish heritage to be celebrated on July 1, 1982.

This celebration was to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the repeal of the Act of Proscription in 1747 that forbade Scots from wearing tartan. In April of 1987, Nova Scotia in Canada declared a National Tartan Day and soon other provinces had followed suit.

In the United States, the U.S Senate passed Resolution 155 on March 20, 1998, that designated April 6 of each year as a National Tartan Day to recognize Scottish-Americans and their contributions to the country. On March 9, 2005, the House of Representatives passed Resolution 41. This was signed by President George W. Bush in April of 2008.

Facts About Scotland

  • Scotland’s national animal is a unicorn
  • Scotland has the highest percentage of redheads (13%) in the world
  • Scotland has the highest percent of blue-eye people (57%) in the world
  • Imports of haggis to the U.S is banned
  • The Scots invented golf
  • Scotland has approximately 790 islands
  • Brave Heart is actually the nickname of Robert the Bruce and not William Wallace
  • The deepest lock in Scotland is Loch Morar
  • Loch Morar is over 1,000 feet deep

Celebrating National Tartan Day

National Tartan Day is a great day to celebrate your Scottish heritage. So feel free to play golf, enjoy Cullen Skink or simply sit around your home wearing tartan. You can also visit one of the many Scottish parades that occur on this day as well. And if your not Scottish then don’t fret. You can still enjoy this holiday. After all, it’s been said that everyone is Scottish on this holiday, so go ahead and enjoy it. We won’t tell a soul!

Where is it celebrated?
Canada (Observance)United States (Observance)
When is it?
This year (2023)
April 6 Thursday
Next year (2024)
April 6 Saturday
Last year (2022)
April 6 Wednesday
Appreciation & Honor