The Mountain Times

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Central Vermont's Most Popular Weekly Newspaper

Celebrating fatherhood

There is something about the way dads think that allows them to transform the ordinary into something extraordinary. From telling stories about make-believe distant lands, to building forts, to playing backyard games, to road trips, to "experiments" in the kitchen, and other adventures many lucky kids grow up counting on dad to make life fun and interesting.

This Sunday, June 16, families around the world will honor fathers and celebrate fatherhood, paternal bonds, and the influence of fathers in society. Many countries celebrate on the third Sunday of June, though this date is not universal.

The first Father's Day in America is said to have been celebrated on June 17, 1910. It took place after a successful campaign by Sonora Dodd to recognize the role of male parents. Dodd was inspired by her own father, William Smart, who successfully raised six kids alone after his wife died in childbirth. According to the most recent census, there are about 70 million fathers in America, 1.7 million of which are single fathers like Smart.

Father's Day became an official national holiday in 1972, 58 years after Mother's Day became official. Although the celebration has not quite caught up to expenditures for moms, American's spend over $1 billion annually on gifts for dad.

Photo by Maxx Steinmetz