“What’s Galentine’s Day? Oh, it’s only the best day of the year,” Leslie Knope, the protagonist in NBC’s “Parks and Recreation,” said in the titular episode, “Galentine’s Day.”
Even if you haven’t watched “Parks and Rec,” you’ve probably heard of Leslie’s self-proclaimed, female-centric holiday. In the Season 2 episode, Leslie designated Feb. 13 as an unofficial holiday in response to Valentine’s Day to celebrate women and female friendships, even more so than an ordinary day. It is one of the best examples of how Leslie’s feminist outlook manifested in the show and permeated in ways beyond the screen. Even if the series ended a few years ago, Leslie (played by the equally awesome Amy Poehler), would be happy to know that women all over the world are still carrying on the tradition of cherishing themselves and their female friendships.
“Every February 13th, my lady friends and I leave our husbands and our boyfriends at home, and we just come and kick it, breakfast style,” Leslie says in the episode. This holiday is for all the ladies out there, whether you have a significant other or not.
So how can you, your friends and family celebrate Galentine’s Day? What’s so great about it is that it’s truly up to you. Even if you can’t get together on the actual day, anything in the spirit of ladies celebrating ladies on a day you choose is appropriate. Feel free to customize what you do, where you do it and what you might possibly give for you and your group of women. The more personal, the better!
Because of Leslie’s love for all things breakfast, especially waffles, she and the women in her life celebrated the holiday over a fun and boozy brunch. If you’re looking for a starting point for your Galentine’s Day, celebrating with food is one of the easiest but also most fun ways to do so. If you and your group enjoy brunch food as much as Leslie, complete with waffles, eggs and drinks, then go for it. Maybe you all want to treat yourselves, dress up and head out to a fancy restaurant. If not, designating your event as a potluck and choosing a food theme, such as desserts or finger foods, makes things easier. If your group decides to do a potluck, every person can bring a food that they like and represents themselves, making it even more special.
If you want to keep the event going after your meal, or maybe your group wasn’t able to get together for one, other activity ideas include getting manicures and pedicures, watching a movie or having a paint night. Either dress up or keep it casual, whatever you and your group are comfortable with.
“You shut your mouth, you have all the strengths,” Leslie offered as words of encouragement to her best friend, Ann Perkins (Rashida Jones). On Galentine’s Day, be sure to hype one another up and acknowledge each other’s strengths.
In that vein, what else is Galentine’s Day good for? Besides catching up on each other’s lives, an acknowledgement of each other’s accomplishments, big and small, is sure to brighten your days. Another idea is to discuss what you admire and love about each other — spread those heartfelt compliments around!
“In your bags you will find a few things … including a personalized 5,000 word essay on why you’re all so awesome,” Leslie said in the episode. Leslie went above and beyond in showering her loved ones with gifts; however, it’s not necessary to be as extravagant to share your love. You and your group should decide if you want to give each other gifts and what amount so everybody can be on the same page. Maybe you can decide to keep the gifts cost-free, and the gifts could be even more creative and personalized. Even a card or a specific favor for a friend shows them you care and appreciate them. Or maybe you will all decide to treat yourselves, like Donna and Tom do in the show, and splurge a little. As long as you and your gal pals are on the same page, it will be sure to be a fun time.
And even if you and the women in your life aren’t able to come together to celebrate Galentine’s Day this year, don’t forget to empower them and yourself throughout the year. As Leslie said, “You are the most beautiful, glowing sun goddess ever.”
Hollie Lao is a staff writer and the social media manager for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.