National Retro Day which is celebrated annually on February 27, takes us back to a time before smartphones and the internet.
History of National Retro Day
National Retro Day was created for us to look back at a time before the internet, smartphones, and social media, a simpler time without the distractions sometimes called "the nice day". Aside from being a day to celebrate all things vintage, the overarching goal is to focus more on the people we're with rather than on our phones. It's a day to create memories and live in the moment with them, instead of being distracted by notifications or using technology to share those moments with the rest of the world. Both those who wanted to relive a bygone era and those who wanted to know what it was like joined in the celebration.
Participants can celebrate any vintage period they want. There is no specific definition of a time as "retro", although it is now generally seen as between the 1950s and 1990s. When it comes to vintage styles, the creators of the time encouraged celebrities wear it (vintage clothes), play it (classic game), drive it (vintage car) and display it (collection).
How to celebrate National Retro Day
Back in the days when face-to-face connectivity was the norm, not messaging, social networking, and video chat; come a time when dinner is more often eaten around the table than sitting in front of the television or with a smartphone in hand; to a time when children spend more time outside and play games that don't need the internet. It is advisable to spend the whole day without social networks, smartphones or internet. Here are some ideas on how to celebrate National Retro Day:
- Have dinner around the table with your family or friends.
- Call someone on a landline. You can use one in your home or a business, or you can use a public phone. Using a rotary phone may be the most appropriate of the day, but a push button phone is okay too.
- If you have a classic car, car or motorcycle, make sure you ride it.
- Watch movies at the drive-in cinema.
- Go to a video game.
- Play classic video games like Atari 2600, Sega Genesis, Nintendo or Super Nintendo.
- Show off your vintage memorabilia collection. It is possible that you will have a collection of some interesting things that you can show your friends.
- Listen to music from the second half of the 20th century on vinyl, 8-track tape, cassette, or even on compact discs. Choose a genre or an artist, or listen to a variety of both. Some popular genres from decades ago that you can listen to include rock and roll, disco, soul, funk, punk rock, country, hip hop, and pop.
- Listen to music on a jukebox without an Internet connection.
- Watch episodes of music shows like The Midnight Special, The Ed Sullivan Show, Soul Train or Hullabaloo.
- Watch an old TV show, such as The Andy Griffith Show, M*A*S*H, All in the Family, The Jeffersons, Cheers, Happy Days, Starsky and Hutch, and I Love Lucy. You can also watch documentaries about past decades, such as the miniseries The Sixties or the other CNN documentaries that follow it.
- Watch a classic movie. From the 1950s, you can watch Rebel Without a Cause, On the Waterfront, North by Northwest, Some Like it Hot, Sunset Boulevard, or Vertigo; from the 1960s, you can watch The Graduate, Dr Strangelove: Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb, Psycho, The Apartment, In the Heat of the Night, Easy Rider, or Cool Hand Luke; from the 1970s, you can watch Taxi Driver, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Alice doesn't Live Here Anymore, Harold and Maude, Network, All the President's Men, Jaws, Star Wars, or The Godfather; from the 1980s, you can watch Back to the Future, The Goonies, Ghostbusters, The Breakfast Club, E.T., or The Terminator; from the 1990s, you can watch Jurassic Park, The Shawshank Redemption, Forrest Gump, Fargo or American Beauty. While watching any of the shows or movies above, it's best to watch them on VHS or laser discs, or maybe DVDs, or on actual movies if you really want to watch them again. While many of them are available on streaming services, since you're not using the Internet today, that's not how you watch them.
- Read a printed newspaper.
- Write a handwritten letter to someone.
- Play a board game like Battleship, Monopoly, or Sorry.
- Buy or wear retro clothes. Styles change with the times. Some of the classic outfits often worn include bell bottoms, leather jackets, flats, and leisure suits.
- Pull your hair back, but it up into a tangled hairstyle or build it into a honeycomb.
- Get out and play some sport or ride a bike. You can also go to a rolling field.
- Eat at an indoor drive-in restaurant.
One of the official recommendations of the day was to share what you're doing vintage on social media using the hashtag #NationalRetroDay. This may seem ironic, since you also have to avoid the Internet or smartphones during the day. Perhaps you could use a vintage camera to take pictures of your experiences and then post them online tomorrow. National Retro Day also has a Facebook page that you can visit. Over the years, an official party was held on this day, and information about it was listed on the Facebook page.
ObservedNational Retro Day has been observed annually on February 27th.
Thursday, February 27th, 2020
Saturday, February 27th, 2021
Sunday, February 27th, 2022
Monday, February 27th, 2023
Tuesday, February 27th, 2024
Hermelinda A. Aguilar on February 9th, 2018
Robert Duran on February 9th, 2018
Tina Duran on February 9th, 2018