Valentine’s Day occurs every year on February 14th. It is a celebration of love. All over the United States and in other places around the world, candy, flowers, and gifts are exchanged between loved ones, all in the name of St. Valentine. You may be wondering where these traditions come from. First of all, the ancient Roman ritual of Lupercalia has inspired the card-giving customs of Victorian England which has made the tradition of giving cards for Valentines Day become a tradition. One of the most wondered questions about Valentine’s Day is who was the real Saint Valentine? There is one legend that states that Valentine was a priest who served during the third century in Rome but when Emperor Claudius II decided that single men made better soldiers than those with wives and families, he banned marriage for young men. Valentine knew that this was unfair so he defied Claudius and continued to perform marriages for young couples secretly. There are other legends such as ones that explain how Valentine may have been killed for attempting to help Christian’s escape prisons where they were often tortured and according to one other language, Valentine who was supposedly in prison sent the first “Valentine” to a young girl who visited him during his time in jail who he fell in love with. Before his death, he apparently wrote her a letter signed “From your Valentine.” Although there are many legends about “Valentine’s Day,” they all emphasize that he is a sympathetic, heroic, and of course romantic figure.
There are many different traditions that people partake in on Valentine’s Day but some of the most popular ones are exchanging gifts such as roses or chocolates, and a romantic night out or a nice dinner. Often, younger children in schools will exchange Valentine’s Day cards that might contain chocolate or candies. Flowers are also often given. Either handmade or store-bought Valentine’s Day cards are usually exchanged. Overall, many people see Valentine’s Day as a special occasion to buy expensive gifts and jewelry for their loved one. Besides many fun traditions, there are also a bunch of great Valentine’s Day movies that you can watch for a date or just with your friends and family to celebrate this day of love. Some of the best ones are Pride and Prejudice, Before Sunrise, La La Land, Love Story, The Notebook, Titanic, Dirty Dancing, The Thin Man, A Star is Born, Romeo and Juliet, Beauty and the Beast, Breathless, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, and 10 Things I Hate About You. These are only a few of the many great movies that you can watch to celebrate this special day. To end this off on a festive note, here are some fun facts about Valentine’s Day that you probably didn’t know! To start off, 145 million greeting cards are exchanged every year for Valentine’s Day. Secondly, 8 billion conversation candy hearts are manufactured each year. Thirdly, 250 million roses are grown just for Valentine's Day! Another crazy fact is that candy hearts were originally medical lozenges to help your throat. Also, Over $1 billion worth of chocolate is purchased for Valentine’s Day. To conclude, Valentine’s Day is a very special day for many people and there are many fun things you can do with your loved ones to celebrate and make them feel special!