Holidays Calendar for February 17, 2023

February 17 is a public holiday in Libya, known as February 17th Revolution Day. It marks the beginning of the Libyan Civil War that eventually led to the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi government.

National Caregivers Day is observed annually on the third Friday of February. It was created to honor healthcare professionals who specialize in providing long-term and hospice care.


Cats are one of the most popular and cherished pets in many countries, so it is not surprising that in addition to International Cat Day there are multiple national holidays dedicated to cats. For example, National Cat Day in Italy and Poland is celebrated on February 17.

February 17 is National Café au Lait Day, which is French for “coffee with milk”. Celebrate the holiday with a perfect cup of café au lait and some delicious pastry.

Random Acts of Kindness Day originated in New Zealand where it is celebrated on September 1. In the United States, this unofficial holiday is observed on February 17 instead.

National Cabbage Day is celebrated every February 17 in honor of one of the world’s most widely cultivated vegetables that has been used in cuisine since antiquity and is considered a staple food in most of Europe.

Global Tourism Resilience Day is a United Nations observance held annually on February 17. It was created to highlight the importance of resilient and sustainable tourism for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.

February 17 is National PTA Founders' Day in the United States. This observance honors Phoebe Apperson Hearst, Alice McLellan Birney and Selena Sloan Butler, the founders of the National Parent-Teacher Association.

This Day in History

  • 2015 A stampede occurred during the traditional Mardi Gras parade on Champ de Mars in the Haitian capital Port-au-Prince. 18 people died in the accident and 78 were injured.
  • 2006 A massive mudslide in Southern Leyte, Philippines caused the deaths of 1,126 people.
  • 2001 Died: Barry Burman, English painter, a figurative artist known for this dark and often disturbing subject matter.
  • 1998 Died: Bob Merrill, American composer and songwriter, the second most successful songwriter of the 1950s. He wrote songs that became great hits, such as "If I Knew You Were Comin' I'd've Baked a Cake", "Mambo Italiano", "Love Makes the World Go 'Round".
  • 1996 World chess champion Garry Kasparov beat the Deed Blue supercomputer in a chess match in Philadelphia.
  • 1996 NEAR Shoemaker, a robotic space probe, lifted off on first mission ever to orbit and landed on asteroid 433 Eros.
  • 1991 Born: Bonnie Wright, English actress, filmmaker, and environmental activist. She is best known for her role as Ginny Weasley in the Harry Potter film series.
  • 1991 Born: Ed Sheeran, English singer-songwriter. He has sold more than 150 million records worldwide, making him one of the world's best-selling music artists.
  • 1989 Born: Chord Overstreet, American actor and musician who is best known for his role as Sam Evans on the Fox television series Glee.
  • 1982 Died: Thelonious Monk, American pianist and composer, widely regarded as one of the giants of American music. Monk is known for his unique improvisational style; he made numerous contributions to the standard jazz repertoire.
  • 1981 Born: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, American actor, director and producer, best known for his roles in 10 Things I Hate About You, (500) Days of Summer, Inception, The Dark Knight Rises, Lincoln, Don Jon, The Walk.
  • 1981 Born: Paris Hilton, American socialite, model, actress, and singer. Hilton is the great-granddaughter or Conrad Hilton, the founder of Hilton Hotels. She gained international recognition thanks to the reality show The Simple Life.
  • 1980 Two Polish alpinists, Krzysztof Wielicki and Leszek Cichy, made the first winter ascent to Mount Everest.
  • 1972 Born: Philippe Candeloro, a French former competitive figure skater. He is a two-time Olympic bronze medalist, a two-time World medalist, and a two-time European silver medalist.
  • 1972 Born: Billie Joe Armstrong, American singer-songwriter, guitarist, producer, best known as the vocalist, songwriter and guitarist of punk rock band Green Day.
  • 1970 Born: Dominic Purcell, Australian actor. He is best known for his portrayals of Lincoln Burrows in Prison Break, Rory / Heat Wave in Arrowverse, and Drake / Dracula in Blade: Trinity.
  • 1965 Born: Michael Bay, American film director and producer whose credits include Armageddon, Pearl Harbor, and the Transformers film series.
  • 1965 The Ranger 8, a lunar probe, launched on its mission to photograph the Mare Tranquillitatis region of the Moon in preparation for the Apollo mission.
  • 1963 Born: Michael Jordan, American basketball player and actor. Jordan is considered the best basketball player of all time. He earned the nicknames Air Jordan and His Airness for his leaping ability.
  • 1963 Born: Jen-Hsun Huang, Taiwanese-American businessman, co-founder of the graphics processor company Nvidia.
  • 1962 Born: Lou Diamond Phillips, Filipino-American actor and film director whose breakthrough came when he starred as Ritchie Valens in the biographical drama film La Bamba.
  • 1959 The first weather satellite Vanguard 2 was launched by the USA to measure could-cover distribution.
  • 1955 Born: Mo Yan, Chinese author and Nobel Prize laurate. He is best known to Western readers for his novel Red Sorghum Clan.
  • 1954 Born: Rene Russo, American actress and model. She rose to international prominence in a number of thrillers and action films throughout the 1990s.
  • 1904 Madama Butterfly (Madame Butterfly) by Giacomo Puccini premiered at La Scala in Milan.
  • 1890 Born: Ronald Fisher, English statistician, biologist, and geneticist who is considered one of the three principal founders of population genetics.
  • 1878 The Provisional IRA detonated an incendiary bomb at the La Mon restaurant, near Belfast. 12 people were killed and 30 seriously injured.
  • 1874 Died: Adolphe Quetelet, Belgian astronomer, mathematician, sociologist, the founder of Brussels Observatory and an influential figure in introducing statistical methods to the social sciences.
  • 1863 The International Committee of Red Cross was founded by a group of residents of Geneva. Its original name was the International Committee for Relief to the Wounded.
  • 1856 Died: Heinrich Heine, German journalist and poet. He is best known outside Germany for his lyric poetry that was set to music by Robert Schumann and Franz Schubert.
  • 1854 Died: John Martin, English painter. His triumph was Belshazzar's Feast, which was nearly ruined in an accident on its journey to John Naylor's gallery at Leighton Hall
  • 1854 Born: Friedrich Alfred Krupp, German businessman, founder of Krupp, the largest steel production and ammunition company in Europe at the beginning of the 20th century.
  • 1820 Born: Henri Vieuxtemps, Belgian violinist and composer, a prominent person in the history of the violin, also known for playing Vieuxtemps Guarneri del Gesu, a violin built by Giuseppe Guarneri.
  • 1781 Born: René Laennec, French physician. He invented the stethoscope and pioneered its usages in diagnosis of various chest conditions.
  • 1753 Sweden moved from the Julian calendar to the Georgian calendar, so February 17 was followed by March 1.
  • 1715 Died: Antoine Galland, French archaeologist and translator most famous for his translations of One Thousand and One Nights. His version of the tales had a huge influence on subsequent European literature and attitudes to the Islamic world.
  • 1680 Died: Jan Swammerdam, Dutch biologist and microscopist, the first person to observe and describe red blood cells. His techniques on using the microscope in dissections remained useful for hundreds of years.
  • 1673 Died: Molière, French playwright and actor, who is regarded as one of the greatest masters of comedy in Western literature. His best known works are The Misanthrope, The School for Wives, Tartuffe, or the Hypocrite, and more.
  • 1600 Died: Giordano Bruno, Italian mathematician, astronomer, and philosopher. He is known for his cosmological theories that were not accepted in his time. Bruno was tried for heresy and burned at the stake in Rome.