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June 14, 2005 > The origins of Father's Day

The origins of Father's Day

by Linda Stone

After listening to a church service on Mother's Day 1909, Sonora Smart Dodd proposed that a special day should be set aside to honor fathers. Inspired by her father, a Civil War veteran who was a single parent with six children living in Spokane, Washington, she initially suggested June 5, which was the anniversary of his death. But delays in preparing for the holiday caused the date to move to June 19, 1910. Dodd drew up a petition recommending adoption of a national father's day. The Spokane Ministerial Association and the local Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) supported it.

The idea of a Father's Day gained support from people such as William Jennings Bryan, a gifted orator and three-time United States Democratic nominee for president, and began to spread across America. It was Calvin Coolidge who recommended the day as a national holiday in 1924. President Lyndon Johnson declared the third Sunday of June as Father's Day with a presidential proclamation in 1966, although it was not officially recognized until the presidency of Richard Nixon in 1972.

Below is a list of local Father's Day events.

Friday, June 17
Father's Day Celebration Luncheon
Fremont Senior Center
40086 Paseo Padre Pkwy, Fremont
(510) 790-6610

Friday, June 17
Father's Day Lunch & Classic Car Show
11:45 a.m. - 1p.m.
Newark Senior Center
7401 Enterprise Dr, Newark
(510) 742-4840

Friday, June 17
Father's Day Luncheon
11:30 a.m.
Ruggieri Senior Center
33997 Alvarado Niles Rd, Union City
(510) 489-6629

Sunday, June 19
Father's Day at Ardenwood
10 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Ardenwood Historic Farm
34600 Ardenwood Blvd, Fremont
(510) 796-0663

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