News Flash

Irving Public Library

Posted on: February 13, 2020

Leap Year Celebration

Newsflash Graphic_What is Leap Year

Although it might not be a global celebration, the West Irving Library is hosting a celebration at 2:30 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 29 for Leap Day! Guests can enjoy a performance by the Jumpin’ Jammers Jump Rope Team, create leap inspired crafts and light refreshments. This event is free and all ages are welcome.

Normally, there are 365 days in a single calendar year but once every four years we all experience a leap year. This is because the Earth takes approximately 365 days, 5 hours, 48 minutes and 45 seconds to orbit the sun. That extra time is allocated to one full day at the end of February every four years. The year being 2020, we can experience the next Leap Year in 2024, 2028 and so on.

You might be wondering, what is the point of a leap year? Well, without them the seasons would begin at least one day earlier on the calendar every four years. Add that all together, that would mean that after 360 years, spring (which usually begins in March) would begin in December. Imagine, swapping each holiday song that features the word snow with flowers!

So why is it called Leap Year?

Let us take Christmas for example. In an ordinary year, if Christmas fell on a Tuesday, then the following year Christmas will fall on a Wednesday. When you add that extra day in February (Leap Day) it means Christmas will advance two paces and fall on a Friday instead of a Thursday. Thereby leaping over Thursday.

If you thought that was interesting, here are some additional facts you might not know about Leap Year:

  • People born on Feb. 29 are called leaplings or leapers
  • There is an Honor Society of Leap Year Babies for leapers. The club has more than 10,000 members and they accept contributions.
  • The odds of being born on leap day are 1 in 1500
  • In Hong Kong, the legal birthday of a leap year is March 1 (that is because if you are born on January 1 you are considered 0 days old). In New Zealand the birthday of a leaper is Feb. 28. If you were a leaper, you could essentially begin your birthday in New Zealand on Feb. 28, travel to the US on Feb. 29 and end up in Hong Kong on March 1 and have the longest birthday possible!
  • The frog is a symbol associated with leap year.
  • Every leap year, the city of Anthony, Texas (just outside El Paso) celebrates Feb. 29 with a worldwide festival. The festival has existed since 1988, making Anthony, Texas known as the Leap Year Capital of the World.

Call (972) 721-4612 for more information.

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