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St Nicholas Day in the United States

St Nicholas' Day is an observance of European origin that is celebrated in some American communities on December 6.

Is St Nicholas Day a Public Holiday?

St Nicholas Day is not a public holiday. Businesses have normal opening hours.

Gifts and treats for children on St Nicholas' Day.

©iStockphoto.com/Dejan Ristovski

Celebrate St Nicholas' Day

Children in families who celebrate St Nicholas' Day receive treats - including candy, cookies, small toys, or fruit - in stockings, socks, shoes or bags on December 6. Some churches have special services dedicated to the feast of St Nicholas on this day.

Public Life

St Nicholas' Day is an observance and not a federal public holiday in the US.

About St Nicholas' Day

The legendary figure of St. Nicholas is derived from Nicholas of Myra who officiated as a bishop in 4th century Greece. During his lifetime he developed a reputation for gift-giving by putting coins into other people's shoes, which accounts for many of today's Christmas traditions that involve leaving gifts in shoes or boots.

Some Europeans who immigrated to the United States brought with them beliefs, customs and practices associated with St Nicholas' Day. It has been recorded that celebrations associated with the observance took place in cities such as New York in the early 1800s.

About St Nicholas Day in other countries

Read more about St Nicholas Day.

St Nicholas Day Observances

YearWeekdayDateNameHoliday TypeArea
2010MonDec 6St Nicholas DayObservance 
2011TueDec 6St Nicholas DayObservance 
2012ThuDec 6St Nicholas DayObservance 
2013FriDec 6St Nicholas DayObservance 
2014SatDec 6St Nicholas DayObservance 
2015SunDec 6St Nicholas DayObservance 
2016TueDec 6St Nicholas DayObservance 
2017WedDec 6St Nicholas DayObservance 
2018ThuDec 6St Nicholas DayObservance 
2019FriDec 6St Nicholas DayObservance 
2020SunDec 6St Nicholas DayObservance 

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