National Paper Airplane Day

National Paper Airplane Day is observed next on Sunday, May 26th, 2024 (89 days from today).

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On May 26th each year, there is a day to honor the simple aeronautical toy that has been around for thousands of years, called National Paper Airplane Day.

Every day, hundreds of people around the world are showing Wilbur and Orville Wright that their feat of creating an airplane isn't exactly impressive. After all, all it takes is a simple piece of paper and a few clever folds, and you can create your very own airplane too! National Paper Airplane Day celebrates this humble bit of aviation and reminds us of the role it played in our youth and can still play in our present.

Children and adults enjoy making and playing with paper airplanes. There's something magical about being able to make a piece of paper fly through the air, mimicking a piece of paper from a real plane. It's a fun and exciting way to acknowledge all the wonderful aspects an airplane has to offer and to have the opportunity to celebrate this impressive invention together. The act of flying paper airplanes is a fun, exciting and inexpensive way to entertain yourself. Take some time to learn more about the history of this day and how to properly celebrate it.

History of National Paper Airplane Day

We're not kidding when we say that Wilbur and Orville Wright's achievements aren't impressive, at least when it comes to crafting something that can fly. Okay, so it certainly doesn't look like their amazing machine and the dramatic changes it has made to the world, but the basic concepts could have been developed in a modest medium. It's a paper plane. So how old is paper airplane art? Well, surely you are familiar with an art form in Asia called origami? It followed the introduction of paper in 500 BC.

While we're not exactly sure where the first paper airplanes were born, what we do know is that for the next thousands of years, paper airplanes were the most popular type of man-made airplane. Even Da Vinci was inspired by this, as many of his models and sketches proposed for manned aircraft are said to be made of parchment. The Wright brothers are known for doing extensive research on paper airplanes during the development of that amazing first flight.

Moreover, during World War II, paper airplanes became even more interesting concept for many people. Due to the rations, making toys out of plastic or metal is not feasible. However, paper is a widely available resource for making toys for children. Additionally, Wallis Rigby designed some of the most sought-after paper airplanes of the time. He was an Englishman who moved to the United States in the 1930s. Wallis enjoyed paper airplanes and published his models as books or box sets. He even kindly printed an issue in the Sunday newspaper in the comics section for everyone to experience. At the time, ink shortages led to some weird color schemes. Even today, his designs with a "tab and groove" structure are still a prized item among collectors.

So, although we may think of them as more than simple toys and ways to annoy our teachers, they have actually played an important role in one of the most important invention in the transportation industry, the airplane. They appeared for a good reason and continue to play a part in people's lives today, both in paper form and as a machine capable of transporting someone from one location to the next. One could even say that in the end, paper airplanes took us to the moon.

Some reasons for National Paper Airplane Day being loved

  • They give us art

There aren't many reasons in this modern life to let your inner artist out, but making a paper airplane is one of them! Folding and decorating a paper airplane is the perfect opportunity to spruce up your art and craft kit. Get crafty! Personalize your paper airplane with paints, markers, crayons, glitter - the sky is the limit.

  • No technology required to join

We can all use our smartphones and computers for a few minutes. Crafting a paper airplane allows you to unplug from technology, relax, get out and get some fresh air. (But if you have to carry your phone, it makes for a great Snapchat story.)

  • It's a great way to back your childhood

Time passes fast. Remember those sunny Saturday afternoons you spent with your best friend at the park? Life can be hectic at times, but building a paper airplane can take you back to the days when you used to fly paper airplanes with your BFF and then eat ice cream.

How to celebrate National Paper Airplane Day

Celebrating National Paper Airplane Day is simple and fun, and an activity anyone can participate in regardless of their age or skill level! Just take a piece of paper and fold it into one of many favorite airplane shapes and toss it! Challenge friends and family who can create the most remarkable paper airplane and can stay in the sky in the longest time. The attempt to fold a perfect paper airplane can be tricky and requires time and patience.

Looking for something a little more challenging? The typical wedge-shaped paper plane is just the simplest form. There are books, clubs and hobbyists who have been involved in the creation of intricate paper airplanes that can reach amazing distances with amazing stability. Use this as an opportunity to read up on the subject and see what new creations emerge from putting some thought into the process.

There are competitions to enter and everyone can enter to see who can fold the best paper airplane. In fact, Star Wars fans from all over have taken paper airplane crafting to the next level by creating paper spaceship models from the movie franchise through their skills. Origami paper folding is practiced masterfully. There is even a Guinness World Record that one can try to surpass at leisure.

It can also be fun and exciting to do research and practice folding and creating a perfect paper airplane. There are tons of websites, books, blogs, and resources out there that are worth checking out and taking the time to read. There are tons of tips and tricks to learn that will increase everyone's chances of making a paper airplane that looks impressive and flies long distances.

Don't miss this chance to gather your friends and see who can be the most creative when folding paper into unique shapes that simulate airplanes. National Paper Airplane Day is an opportunity to express one's younger self by creating the best paper airplane ever!


National Paper Airplane Day has been observed annually on May 26th.


Thursday, May 26th, 2022

Friday, May 26th, 2023

Sunday, May 26th, 2024

Monday, May 26th, 2025

Tuesday, May 26th, 2026

Also on Sunday, May 26th, 2024

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