Patriots Day is an American holiday that’s celebrated in Massachusetts, Wisconsin, and Maine. In 2014 it falls on April 21.
The history of the holiday harkens back to 1775, when the battles of Lexington and Concord were fought on April 19. These battles were the first of the American Revolutionary War.
People celebrate the holiday by reenacting battles and holding a range of events.
The holiday is observed on the third Monday in Massachusetts and Maine as an official holiday. State and local offices are closed, though federal offices remain open.
In Wisconsin, it’s a public school observance day. In Florida, people are encouraged to celebrate the day though it’s not an official holiday. In Tennessee, the day is recognized but also not an official holiday.
Patriots’ Day should not be confused with Patriot Day, which is held on September 11 each year to mark the anniversary of the terrorist attacks in the United States on 9/11/2001.
This year, the Town of Lexington celebrated the first shots of the revolution with a reenactment of the early-morning engagement between the town’s militia and the British regulars; the Town of Concord commemorated the “Shot heard round the world” with a dramatic re-staging of the North Bridge fight featuring marching and musket fire; and Concord also held an “The Old Guard” event where the oldest active-duty infantry unit in the U.S. Army demonstrated authentic 18th century battle tactics and musket firing as well as fife and drum music.