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How to Get Involved
Passage of a Space Exploration Day Holiday Resolution
It is our goal to establish July 20th of each year as Space Exploration Day. This day will be recognized as a non-paid holiday, with a legal status equal to Flag Day. At this point we will not press to have a paid federal calendar holiday.
In 1984, Congress passed a resolution establishing July 20th of that year, as the Space Exploration Day non-paid commemorative holiday.
Since then, Congress has given the President of the United States, the authority to create non-paid public holidays. The White House receives hundreds of requests for special holidays every year. These ideas are largely viewed by the White House Staff, as being frivolous. So the extensive White House staff tends to reject all suggestions for new holidays, as a matter of policy.
For Space Exploration Day Holiday, it is necessary to have a U.S. Senator, or State Governor, contact the President directly with the proposal. That can also be a slow involved process working with their staffs.
The Space Exploration Day Holiday is unique in that the mission of Apollo 11 was one of the greatest events of the 20th century. With the President promoting space progress, in the next decade, a Space Exploration Day Holiday would serve the President's, and nation's interests very well.
Space Exploration Day, and its related nine day U.S. Space Observance, has a long history of passed congressional resolutions, and Presidential proclamations. Many of the nation's state governors have issued Space Exploration Day and U.S. Space Observance proclamations over the years.
In recent years there has been little activity in this area, due to supporters, especially supporters in the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics becoming worn out, over having to seek governor's proclamations, congressional resolutions, and a presidential proclamation every year. This takes much well coordinated national effort to do this every year. So the current goal is to get the President of the United States to issue an executive order to establish Space Exploration Day non-paid holiday, and its related U.S. Space Observance permanently.
Much can also be done at the state level, to establish a permanent Space Exploration Day non-paid holiday, and a nine day U.S. Space Observance. This can be done through supporters getting legislation passed in state legislatures.
In 1985, the Ohio State Legislature established a permanent July 20th Space Exploration Day non-paid Holiday, and a July 16th – 24th Ohio Space Observance. A year earlier, the state of Kansas passed similar permanent legislation, but didn't state it officially as a holiday. Arizona also has a permanent Space Exploration Day, and Arizona Space Observance.
Remember July 16 – 24 commemorates the nine day Apollo 11 Moon Mission, from launch date to splashdown date. July 20th is the anniversary of the first Moonwalk. It is called Space Exploration Day, due to the anniversary of the 1976 unmanned Viking Mars Landing being on the same date.
All that is needed, in Kansas and Arizona, is a brief resolution stating that the 1984 resolution for a permanent July 20th Space Exploration Day is recognized, and that it is hereby amended to recognize this day as an official non-paid holiday, of a legal status equal to Flag Day. In all other states, except Kansas, and Ohio, a draft resolution needs to be given to a sponsor in the Senate, and House of the State Legislature.
If the resolution gets stuck in committee, get respected members of the community, especially key pro-space Republican or Democratic Party leaders, contacting key legislators, to get the resolution out of committee.
Contact Space Exploration Day Holiday founder, David Baxter, to get information on AIAA sections, and National Space Society chapters in the state, that could help in letter writing campaigns, if necessary.
Once the legislation is passed, follow-up will be important to get the holiday publicly recognized. Send out press releases to radio stations, television stations. Also contact the state's Jaycees, Chambers of Commerce, and merchants associations. Much work needs to be done in Ohio, to make Space Exploration Day Holiday recognized by the general public every year. The legislation in Ohio and Kansas was easy to pass, without opposition.
Send copies of the passed legislation to the states national Senators and Congressmen, to encourage their support for future progress in the Space Program.