National holidays can be fun, silly, and sometimes downright ridiculous. But they also can give restaurants and other businesses a good excuse for sales, discounts, and extra publicity. Take a look at some of these unique national holidays happening this summer and find ways to celebrate each one right here in Mt. Vernon!
National Donut Day- June 7th
Jelly-filled, powdered sugar, long john, or apple fritter. What’s your favorite donut? You don’t need a holiday to enjoy a good donut, but it is the perfect reason to head to Farmhouse Bakery & Café! Among many other home baked treats, you can try a homemade donut baked fresh daily by this locally owned Mennonite bakery. Rumor has it, the donuts are as a big as your head, so bring your sweet tooth!
Farmhouse Bakery & Café | 1812 Broadway St. | (618) 816-4001
National Go Fishing Day- June 18th
Heading out in the early morning, or on a sunny afternoon to cast a line and hope for a good-sized catfish or crappie. To those who enjoy fishing, this sounds like the ideal, relaxing day. Four of Illinois’ fishing records have been caught at Rend Lake, the perfect fishing spot in Southern Illinois. Enjoy a day out on the lake and seeing what you can catch for dinner!
Wayne Fitzgerrell State Park | 11094 Ranger Rd., Whittington, IL 62897 | (618) 629-2320
National Selfie Day- June 21st
On average, 93 million selfies are taken per day. Could we find an easier day to celebrate? Get creative with your selfies! Head to your favorite Mt. Vernon Restaurant or Attraction, take a selfie and post it to Instagram or Facebook. Make sure to tag your location along with Enjoy Mt. Vernon, and hashtag #MTVIL200!
Bonus: June is National Fruit and Vegetables Month!
All month long celebrate National Fruit and Vegetables Month by buying local produce! Open seasonally, on Tuesdays and Fridays, look for the Farmer’s Market in the Times Square Mall parking lot. Find produce from several local farmers and vendors. Fresh fruit and vegetables can also often be found at Mt. Vernon’s Market Days, the first Saturday of the month May through September at Veteran’s Park.
National Kitten Day- July 10th
Kittens sleep up to 18 hours a day! And, who doesn’t love holding a cuddly, sleepy kitten? The Jefferson County Animal Shelter has several cats and kittens that are up for adoption. Find one that’s perfect for your family and give it a loving home today.
Jefferson County Animal Control | 107 E. Perkins Ave. | (618) 244-8024
National Hot Dog Day- July 17th
Here’s a hot dog fun fact: According to Guinness World Records, the world’s longest hot dog holds the record at 669 ft. made by Novex S.A. in Paraguay in 2011. Whether at the ballpark or an evening cook out, summer is the best time to enjoy a hot dog. Bugsy’s Chicago Dog in Mt. Vernon serves a variety of mouthwatering, fresh Chicago-Style hot dogs and sausages. Celebrate National Hot Dog day with a local, Chicago-style dog!
Bugsy’s Chicago Dog | 311 Broadway St. | (618) 242-3647
National Dance Day- July 27th
Tap dance, ballet, line dancing, the Waltz, break dancing, what’s your favorite way to dance? Dancing safely strengthens the bones and muscles without the possibility of joint pains. Randy’s Family Center in Mt. Vernon hosts regular line dancing on the weekends with various local bands. They even offer special line dancing classes!
Randy’s Family Center | 2845 N Benton Rd (S Rt 37) | (618) 731-2384
Bonus: July is National Ice Cream Month!
Nothing sounds better on a warm summer evening, than going out for ice cream. Sundaes, floats, hard dipped, soft serve, no matter which way you like your ice cream, indulge in National Ice Cream Month! The Twist and Shake located just 10 miles south of Mt. Vernon in Bonnie, IL offers ice cream avalanches, soft serve, parfaits, sundaes, shakes, banana splits and more. Enjoy classics like a chocolate twist cone or branch out and try a strawberry cheesecake avalanche!
Twist and Shake | 675 S. IL HWY 37 | (618) 242-2468
National Book Lover’s Day- Aug. 9th
Bookworms unite! The hours can slip by when enjoying a good book you can’t put down. The book was originally designed to make writings and drawings more portable for those that could not carry around stone tablets. Mt. Vernon’s local bookstore, King City Books carries books by local author’s, as well as New York Time’s best-selling novels. Get lost in reading and let the friendly baristas whip up a fancy espresso drink in their cozy coffee shop atmosphere!
King City Books | 104 N. 9th St. | (618) 315-6774
National Bowling Day- Aug. 10th
Whether you bowl competitively or just for fun, you don’t have to bowl strikes to have a good time! The first indoor bowling lanes were built in New York City in 1840. Nu Bowl Lanes is a 28-lane bowling center in Mt. Vernon with onsite dining at their Back Office Bar & Grill. Enjoy cosmic bowling every Friday and Saturday night or hold your next birthday party on the lanes. Register your child on kidsbowlfree.com and to receive two free games of bowling every day for the entire summer.
Nu Bowl Lanes | 1315 N 17th St. | (618) 242-0300
National Waffle Day- Aug. 24th
According to nationaltoday.com, on this day in 1869, a man named Cornelius Swartwout received the first U.S. patent for the waffle iron. Waffles can be enjoyed or lunch at The Waffle Company in Mt. Vernon! Not to be confused with the chain Waffle House, this local breakfast joint serves up standard or mini waffles, plain or full of chocolate chips, and topped with fruit topping.
The Waffle Company | 4115a Broadway St. | (618) 242-6047
Bonus: August is National Catfish Month!
Catfish get their name from their cat-like looking whiskers. The worlds largest freshwater fish ever recorded is said to be the Mekong River catfish, caught in Thailand and weighing in at 646 pounds! If your taste buds enjoy fried catfish, try Trackside Bar & Grill’s catfish chunks or fried catfish dinner with a side of onion rings or a full salad bar.
Trackside Bar & Grill | 201 Broadway St. | (618) 315-6090
For a more in-depth list of national holidays click HERE.