Get ready to have some fun while showing appreciation for and learning about the black bear – because it’s time to celebrate National Black Bear Day!
History of National Black Bear Day
The black bear has ancestors from Asia that are believed to date back millions of years, eventually making their way across the Bering Land Bridge and over to North America. The animal as it is known today has been part of North America for hundreds of thousands of years.
When the early pioneers and settlers arrived in North America in the 1400s, black bears were abundant. In fact, the black bear continues to be the most common species of bear on the continent, ranging from Alaska in the north to Mexico in the south. In fact, black bears can be found in 40 different US states and every one of the Canadian provinces.
National Black Bear Day got its start when it was founded by the North Carolina Black Bear Festival to raise awareness and dispel myths that surround this majestic creature. Now, the day is celebrated annually on the first Saturday of the month and is growing in popularity throughout North Carolina and many other places!
How to Celebrate National Black Bear Day
Enjoy National Black Bear Day and celebrate in a variety of ways. Perhaps consider including some of these ideas in the plans for the day:
Visit the North Carolina Black Bear Festival
Located in Plymouth, North Carolina, this festival was created to celebrate and educate the public about the black bear in a variety of fun and interactive ways. Many people don’t realize that the state of North Carolina has some of the largest black bears on the globe, setting several world records – and that’s certainly an interesting reason to celebrate!
National Black Bear Day can be spent at the festival participating in fun and exciting events that change each year. Examples of past events have included airboat rides, a black bear museum, black bear theater, races, classic car show and even a baby bear dress-up contest.
Learn Fun Facts About Black Bears
Black bears are fascinating creatures that offer tons of different reasons to celebrate them on National Black Bear Day! Here are some interesting facts to learn and share to raise awareness for the day:
Black bear cubs usually weigh less than one pound when they are born and they gain 20-30 pounds in their first three months of life!
Black bears are incredible swimmers. In fact, they are very good at paddling and in fresh water are able to swim for at least a mile and a half.
While they will eat meat, such as fish, and other types of foods, black bears are mostly vegetarians with a mainstay diet of grasses, herbs and fruits they find when foraging.
Black bears can move very fast. They can run up to 40 km per hour and their short claws make them excellent at climbing trees.