Is there such a thing as Star Wars Day?


Spe­cial to the Whig

Dear Li­brar­ian: My son said May 4th was Star Wars Day. Is there such a thing?

Dear Reader: Your son is cor­rect! There is in­deed such a thing as Star Wars Day. But why is it on May 4? As the story goes, we have the Bri­tish Par­lia­ment to thank.

On May 4, 1979, Con­ser­va­tive can­di­date Mar­garet Thatcher was elected as Eng­land’s first fe­male Prime Minister. That night, the Con­ser­va­tive Party re­port­edly pur­chased a half-page ad­ver­tise­ment in Lon­don’s Even­ing News read­ing, “May the Fourth Be with You, Mag­gie. Con­grat­u­la­tions.” This twist on the pop­u­lar Jedi farewell “May the Force be with you” was eas­ily rec­og­niz­able to fans of the fran­chise’s first film “Star Wars: A New Hope,” which had been re­leased only two years prior.

A cou­ple decades af­ter Thatcher’s elec­tion, the In­ter­net and so­cial me­dia gave fans a new way to con­nect with each other, and it was only a mat­ter of time be­fore some­body de­cided May 4 war­ranted a party.

The first of­fi­cial Star Wars Day cel­e­bra­tion took place at the Toronto Un­der­ground Cin­ema on May 4, 2011. Par­tic­i­pants en­joyed a cos­tume competition, trivia con­test and photo ops with their fa­vorite char­ac­ters. Since then, con­ven­tions, events, film marathons and cel­e­bra­tions have taken place all across the world on this nerdi­est of days.

And, of course, the li­brary makes it pos­si­ble for ev­ery­one to get in on the ac­tion. Whether you are feel­ing fes­tive this week, or try­ing to fig­ure out the dif­fer­ence be­tween a Wookie and an Ewok, the Ce­cil County Pub­lic Li­brary’s got you cov­ered. Visit your fa­vorite branch to pick up a char­ac­ter en­cy­clo­pe­dia to learn more about the Star Wars uni­verse, or check out the movies and re­live (or dis­cover) the magic.

May the Fourth be with you!

Last Week’s Trivia Ques­tion: How did spring clean­ing originate? An­swer: There are sev­eral sug­gested ori­gins for spring clean­ing based on reli­gious prac­tices. One of these is traced to the Jewish cel­e­bra­tion of Passover, which oc­curs in March or April each year. Prior to the cel­e­bra­tion, the home is usu­ally com­pletely cleaned.

This Week’s Trivia Ques­tion: How long did it take Han Solo to make the Kes­sel Run in the Mil­len­nium Fal­con?

Up­com­ing Event: For more Star Wars, at­tend the Teen Art Club at the North East Branch Li­brary at 3:30 p.m. on May 16. Then re­turn for “The Force Awak­ens” film screen­ing on May 26 at 3:15 p.m. For more in­for­ma­tion, call 410-996-6269 or visit www. ce­

What Peo­ple Are Ask­ing runs weekly in Jump­start and is writ­ten by li­brar­i­ans at the Ce­cil County Pub­lic Li­brary. Ques­tions? Visit your lo­cal branch, email ask@cc­plnet. org, call 410-996-5600 or visit www.ce­cil.ebranch.

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