Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Celebrate Colorado Day!

Columbine, Aquilegia caerulea, Colorado state flower,
On August 1, 1876, president Ulysses S. Grant signed a proclamation admitting Colorado as a state. Colorado Day was celebrated as a state holiday on August 1 for many years, and then was moved to the first Monday in August, most likely after the time the U.S. Congress passed the Uniform Holidays Bill in 1968. The day no longer became a public holiday, but rather an observance, when the state started observing Martin Luther King Jr Day as a public holiday in 1985.  

Following are some Colorado natives that have earned designation as a state symbol.

Colorado state insect: Colorado hairstreak butterfly, Hypaurotis crysalus

Colorado state cactus: Claret cup cactus Echinocereus triglochidiatus

Colorado state bird: Lark Bunting, Calamospiza melanocorys

Colorado state grass: Blue Grama grass, Bouteloua gracilis

Colorado state tree: Blue Spruce, Picea pungens
Photo courtesy  archives

If all that makes you want to go out and celebrate, you might start by singing the 1915 state song, Where the Columbines Grow, or the 2007 state song, John Denver's Rocky Mountain High. A perfect end to the day would be to put on your cowboy boots and stomp out the Colorado state folk dance - the square dance, of course!

For a list of all the state symbols, visit: