You know how some cynical people disparage certain holidays by saying they were dreamed up by greeting card companies? (We find this sentiment prevalent among newly-single people regarding Valentine’s Day. Not us. Other people.) Well, this month we’ve got Friendship Day – which really was dreamed up by Hallmark Cards, in 1919. But even with its arguably crass and commercial beginnings, many people around the world do celebrate this holiday. And we say, “Sounds like a good excuse for a party!”

According to Wikipedia, Friendship Day is traditionally celebrated on the first Sunday of August (although this year the United Nations declared July 30 to be the International Day of Friendship). By the 1940s, Americans had mostly decided Friendship Day was too commercial – a transparent excuse to sell greeting cards. However, the holiday is experiencing a resurgence in several countries around the world, especially in Asia.

But back to our original thought: let’s have a party! The end of July, or the beginning of August, seems like an excellent time to hold a get-together, in honor of Friendship Day. Invite all your friends, from different circles, and let everyone come together for conversation, good food and drinks. Nothing fancy – we’re thinking a BBQ or party in the backyard sounds about right. Give the kids a splasher pool and water balloons, crank up some tunes, and just relax. A potluck theme would be perfect for the food – it’s less work for you, and most people are happy to pitch in anyway. It’s a great way to discover some new recipes!

Since it’s Friendship Day, the focus of this shindig should be friends. Not your obligatory invites – those people you don’t really like but you feel like you have to invite them. For this one event, keep them off the list! Focus on real friends, people around whom you can really be yourself.

Friendship Day sounds like a pretty good idea to us. Let’s do it every year… because everyone needs a) friends, and b) a good party!