Happy New Year!

Or is it “Happy New Year’s”? Are you sure you know how to write holiday names correctly? Here’s a handy reference to use when you’re sending out greetings to family and friends. I’ll include both the holiday name as well as how you would write it out in conversation. (Note: these are national holidays in the United States.) Let’s go! 🙂

New Year
“Happy New Year!” (all capitalized)
“I hope your new year will be amazing.” (not capitalized)
New Year’s Day (need apostrophe)
New Year’s Eve (need apostrophe)
New Year’s resolution (need apostrophe, and “resolution” is lowercase)
“I’m going to a party on New Year’s.” (This implies “New Year’s Eve,” write it the same except without “Eve”)
“I’m staying home on New Year’s Day.” (Write out “Day” if you’re not referring to New Year’s Eve”)
“I hope the new year will be better than the last one.” (not capitalized)

Valentine’s Day
“Happy Valentine’s Day!” (note where the apostrophe goes)
“Will you be my valentine?”
“I’m making a valentine for my sweetheart.”

Presidents’ Day
This holiday is in honor of our first president’s birthday (George Washington), but note that the apostrophe goes at the end which makes it plural to honor all presidents.

St. Patrick’s Day or Saint Patrick’s Day
As long as you write the greeting either of these ways—and put the punctuation in the right place—no grammarian will pinch you!

Easter Sunday (capitalized)
“Happy Easter!”
“Have a blessed Easter!”
“Happy Resurrection Day!”
Easter eggs
Easter egg hunt

April Fools’ Day or April Fool’s Day
Either way is acceptable, although the first is more commonly used. Just make sure to use an apostrophe so you won’t be an April fool!

Mother’s Day and Father’s Day
Always written this way correctly.

Memorial Day
The day we honor military personnel who died in service to our country.

Independence Day or the Fourth of July
“Happy Fourth of July!” (not “4th”)
“It’s almost the Fourth of July.” (notice only “Fourth” and “July” are capitalized)

Labor Day
Capitalize both words

Veterans Day (no apostrophe)
The day we honor those who served in the military, whether or not they died while in service.

“Happy Thanksgiving!”
“Have a happy Thanksgiving!” (just the holiday is capitalized)

“Merry Christmas!”
“Happy Holidays!” (no apostrophe, capitalized)
“I hope you enjoy the holidays.” (not capitalized)
“We send you best wishes for the holiday season.” (not capitalized)
“Season’s Greetings!” (need apostrophe)

There are many other holidays people celebrate (one of my favorites is National Chocolate Day!), but these are the most common ones.

Savvy Writer Tip:

Holidays are special. Let’s write them correctly, too! 🙂