Saint Nicholas Day

Observed December 6th

Saint Nicholas day is quickly approaching! Make sure you have your shoes out in front of your door so he will give you special treats inside to all the good boys and girls! You may wonder why we leave shoes out, and you may also wonder who this St. Nicholas guy is opposed to Santa. Here are some fun facts about this fun, festive holiday that is celebrated around the world!

  1. Nicholas was orphaned at a young age. He used his wealth that he inherited from his parents for the greater good of man. This made him the first philanthropist to become a saint.
  2. He anonymously gave gifts in his hometown of Patara, Turkey; his most infamous being to a destitute family of three girls who lost their father and would have been sold into slavery. Over the course of three nights, he dropped a coin purse into the windows of the young girl’s home providing them with gold coins so they were no longer destitute.
  3. Saint Nicholas is the patron saint of both pawnbrokers and children.
  4. Saint Nicholas became known as “Sinterklaas” by the Dutch. When they began to settle in New Amsterdam (New York City), over time Sinterklaas morphed into Santa Claus.
  5. During the 20th Century oranges were a popular gift to leave in children’s shoes. The oranges would resemble the round purses containing gold coins that were given to the destitute families.

So this December 6th remember to leave your shoes out in the hopes of Saint Nicholas visiting! He comes to see all the good boys and girls, not just the ones who need his help!